Ten Chinese aircraft cross Taiwan Strait median line, island,s defence ministry says

Ten Chinese aircraft crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait on Tuesday, according to the island's defence ministry.

The ministry said in a statement that 10 Chinese aircraft – including four H-6 bombers, four J-16 fighters, one Y-8 early warning aircraft and one KJ-500 airborne early warning and control aircraft – entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone in the morning.

The ministry said that the Chinese aircraft did not enter Taiwan's airspace and that the Taiwanese air force had monitored their activities and deployed “combat alert sorties” to monitor the situation.

The ministry also said that despite the presence of the Chinese aircraft, the situation remained “generally peaceful” and that they had not taken any hostile action.

The move marks the first time since the start of the year that Chinese military aircraft have crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait, which is regarded by both sides as a de facto border.

The incident comes amid heightened tension between the island and mainland China, which considers Taiwan to be a renegade province. China has stepped up military activities around the island in recent months, including sending fighter jets and bombers across the median line.

Taiwan's defence ministry said it was monitoring the situation and reinforcing its defences in preparation for any further military incursions.

The incident also follows a statement from China's defence ministry on Monday, warning Taiwan against any moves towards formal independence.