In what seems to be China’s renewed attempt to threaten Taiwan, the PLA Navy has conducted mock dogfights with J-10 and Su-30 fighter jets in the country’s Zhejiang Province, off the coast of the East China Sea.
The state-owned Global Times reported that the combat exercise with different fighter jets was conducted by the naval aviation brigade attached to the PLA Eastern Theater Command. The naval version of J-10 has reportedly been upgraded with advanced avionics systems and China’s most advanced close-range combat missiles.
Fu Qianshao, a Chinese military aviation expert, told GT that J-10 is similar to the US-made F-16 and F/A-18 and France-made Rafale in terms of aerodynamics and mobility. He also said that Su-30 can play the heavy fighter role like that of the US F-15.
In October, a brief dogfight had ensued between the Taiwanese F-16s and the PLAAF Su-30 over the South China Sea when the PLA Air Force (PLAAF) tried to enter the Taiwanese airspace during the visit of a top American diplomat.
Reports suggest the Su-30MKKs were providing escort to a Shaanxi Y-8 transport aircraft. At that time, the two F-16s had pursued a PLAAF Y-8 aircraft to force its retreat from the air defense identification zone (ADIZ).
On Tuesday, two Chinese military Y-8 aircraft entered Taiwan’s southwest air defense identification zone (ADIZ), Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense (MND) claimed.
The MND said of the two Y-8s, one was an anti-submarine variant and another reconnaissance variant. They entered the airspace between southwest Taiwan and the Taiwan-controlled Dongsha Islands (Pratas Islands) in the South China Sea.
— 國防部 Ministry of National Defense, R.O.C. ?? (@MoNDefense) December 15, 2020
Chinese President Xi Jinping has announced that any attempts to split China would be met with force. Beijing considers Taiwan part of its territory. With a rise in US arms supply to the island nation, Beijing is putting military pressure on Taiwan in a bid to make it part of mainland China.