U.S. military plane forced to evade close ‘buzz’ by Chinese jet, Pentagon says – National

U.S. military plane forced to evade close ‘buzz’ by Chinese jet, Pentagon says – National

A Chinese military plane came within 20 feet (6 metres) of the nose of a U.S. air force aircraft in the contested South China Sea last week and forced it to take evasive maneuvers to avoid a collision in international airspace, the U.S. military said on Thursday.

The close encounter followed what the United States has called a recent trend of increasingly dangerous behavior by Chinese military aircraft that have also “buzzed” planes of other countries that operate in the region — including Canada.

The latest incident, which involved a Chinese Navy J-11 fighter jet and a U.S. air force RC-135 aircraft, took place on Dec. 21, the U.S. military said in a statement.

“We expect all countries in the Indo-Pacific region to use international airspace safely and in accordance with international law,” it added.

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Canadian military plane ‘intercepted’ by Chinese jets during latest mission

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The Chinese embassy in Washington D.C. did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In the past, China has said that the United States sending ships and aircraft into the South China Sea is not good for peace.

U.S. military planes and ships routinely carry out surveillance operations and travel through the region.

China claims vast swathes of the South China Sea that overlap with the exclusive economic zones of Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, Indonesia and the Philippines.

Trillions of dollars in trade flow every year through the waterway, which also contains rich fishing grounds and gas fields.

Click to play video: 'China says Canadian military jets have increased reconnaissance, provocations'

China says Canadian military jets have increased reconnaissance, provocations

In a meeting with his Chinese counterpart in November, U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin raised the need to improve crisis communications, and also noted what he called dangerous behavior by Chinese military planes.

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Despite tensions between the United States and China, U.S. military officials have long sought to maintain open lines of communication with their Chinese counterparts to mitigate the risk of potential flare-ups or deal with any accidents.

Australia’s defense department said in June that a Chinese fighter aircraft dangerously intercepted an Australian military surveillance plane in the South China Sea region in May.

Australia said the Chinese jet flew close in front of the RAAF aircraft and released a “bundle of chaff” containing small pieces of aluminum that were ingested into the Australian aircraft’s engine.

Click to play video: 'World reacts to China’s fighter jets reportedly ‘buzzing’ Canadian military planes'

World reacts to China’s fighter jets reportedly ‘buzzing’ Canadian military planes

In June, Canada’s military accused Chinese warplanes of harassing its patrol aircraft as they monitored evasions of United Nations sanctions on North Korea, sometimes forcing Canadian planes to divert from their flight paths.

Sources told Motorcycle accident toronto today at the time that there had been approximately 60 of these types of intercepts with Chinese fighter jets since Christmas 2021, over two dozen of which have been deemed dangerous.

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Those jets had been frequently flying as close as 20 to 100 feet from the Canadian plane, sources said at the time — so close that Canadian pilots can make eye contact with the Chinese pilots, and sometimes see them raising their middle fingers. The sources spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive information.

At the time, a spokesperson for the Department of National Defence had said the incidents are “of concern and of increasing frequency.”

Beijing, meanwhile, insisted its military took reasonable measures to counter “risky and provocative acts” by Canada in the region.

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Why is China ‘buzzing’ Canadian, Australian planes? Here’s what you need to know

In November, the department told Motorcycle accident toronto today Chinese military jets had once again “intercepted” the Canadian CP-140 Aurora aircraft during the “most recent iteration” of Operation Neon, the North Korea sanctions mission, which took place between September and November.

Relations between China and the United States have been tense, with friction between the world’s two largest economies over everything from Taiwan and China’s human rights record to its military activity in the South China Sea.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan in August infuriated China, which saw it as a U.S. attempt to interfere in its internal affairs. China subsequently launched military drills near the island.

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The United States has no formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan but is bound by law to provide the island with the means to defend itself.

—With additional files from Motorcycle accident toronto today