US Navy Flies Aircraft Through The Taiwan Strait

The U.S. 7th Fleet said a Navy P-8A Poseidon flew through the Taiwan Strait on Wednesday, a day after U.S. and Chinese defense chiefs held their first talks since November 2022 in an effort to reduce regional tensions.

The patrol and reconnaissance plane “transited the Taiwan Strait in international airspace,” the 7th Fleet said in a news release.

“By operating within the Taiwan Strait in accordance with international law, the United States upholds the navigational rights and freedoms of all nations,” the release said.

The critical strait is 160 kilometers (100 mile) wide and divides China from the self-governing island democracy. Although it’s in international waters, China considers the passage of foreign military aircraft and ships through it a challenge to its sovereignty.

China claims the island of Taiwan, threatening to defend it by force if necessary despite U.S. military support for the island.

China scrambled fighter jets to “monitor the U.S. plane’s passage” and operated “in accordance of laws and regulations, naval Col. Li Xi, spokesperson for the Chinese People’s Liberation Army’s Eastern Theater Command, said in a report on the command’s official Weibo social media site.

Read more here from ABC News.