Sunday, June 20, 2021

Has Taiwan Shot-Down Chinese SU-35 Fighter Jet For Violating Its Airspace?

Taiwan has reportedly shot-down a Chinese Air Force, Russian-origin Su-35 aircraft that supposedly violated its airspace. Multiple videos circulating on social media show a jet, believed to be a Chinese People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) Su-35, immersed in smoke. 

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According to another unconfirmed and trending social media reports, the SU-35 jet crashed in Guangxi, an autonomous coastal region in southern China, bordering Vietnam, after intruding into the Taiwan Strait and the South China Sea.

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However, many users have flagged the report calling it false while some said that the fighter jet crashed due to technical glitch.  There is no official statement either from China or Taiwan.

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Journalist Nicola Smith Asia correspondent at The Daily Telegraph tweeted – Lots of speculation coming from Indian Twitter accounts claiming that #Taiwan shot down a PLA jet. Taiwan’s Ministry of defence has responded categorically that this is fake news. 

Later, Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defence issued a statement on Friday, denying that it had shot down a Chinese Su-35 fighter jet. ‘The Air Force Command solemnly refutes that this is false information and completely untrue,’ the notice read.

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Earlier, China has warned the United States that it may be forced to strike the first blow over the latter’s increased presence in Taiwan.

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This is according to a report published by Chinese Military expert, Yang Sheng, who said that experts in China believe that “Washington is provoking Beijing to fire the first shot, and that the current tensions could further escalate”, following local reports suggesting that a US military aircraft took off from a Taiwan-based airfield on its flight to Japan. However, Taiwan’s Air Force Command was quick to rubbish such reports.

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Yang, who writes for Global Times hinted that the Chinese military experts believe that Taiwanese officials’ instantaneous rejection is proof that such attempts can provoke China to open fire. Yang wrote – “That’s why Taiwan military officials have to deny the incident as they know how serious this could get if US military aircraft really landed on the island.”

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