South China Morning Post
May 24, 2022

Japan says China, Russia jets flew nearby as Quad leaders met to talk about regional security

Chinese and Russian fighter jets carried out joint flights near Japan on Tuesday as leaders of the Quad bloc met in Tokyo, the Japanese defence minister said.

Nobuo Kishi said the government had expressed “grave concerns” to Russia and China over the flights, which took place while leaders from the United States, India, Australia and Japan held talks on regional security.

The planes did not breach territorial airspace, the defence ministry said, and it is the fourth time since November that long-distance joint flights by Russia and China have been spotted near Japan.

“Two Chinese bombers joined two Russian bombers in the Sea of Japan and made a joint flight to the East China Sea,” Kishi told reporters.

“After that, a total of four aircraft, two presumed (new) Chinese bombers – which replaced the two Chinese bombers – and two Russian bombers, conducted a joint flight from the East China Sea to the Pacific Ocean.”

He said a Russian intelligence-gathering aircraft also flew off northern Hokkaido to the Noto Peninsula in central Japan on Tuesday, calling the moves especially “provocative” given the summit in Tokyo.

The Quad leaders on Tuesday warned against attempts to “change the status quo by force”….

Their statement referred to the war in Ukraine….

[Japan] scrambled military jets 1,004 times in the past year to March, the second highest on record, according to the defence ministry.

Most were to counter approaching Chinese aircraft, although many of the rest involved Russian aircraft.

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Global Times
May 24, 2022

PLA increases warship activities in key straits near Japan amid provocative US, Japanese remarks

Soon after the Liaoning aircraft carrier group wrapped up its far sea drills in waters between Japan and the island of Taiwan, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy reportedly sent more warships simultaneously through two strategically important straits northwest and southwest of Japan on Monday, marking an increase in Chinese naval activities in the region at a time when US President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida made provocative remarks on China during Biden’s visit to Japan.

Chinese military experts stressed that the PLA drills are routine and can help safeguard China’s strategic security.

The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force spotted two Type 054A frigates of the PLA Navy – the Xuzhou and the Handan – when they transited the Tsushima Strait from southwest to northeast and headed toward the Sea of Japan on Monday, Japan’s Ministry of Defense Joint Staff said in a press release late in the day.

A separate press release by Japan’s Ministry of Defense Joint Staff said that the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force also confirmed that the Hangzhou, a Sovremenny-class destroyer of the PLA Navy, entered the Pacific Ocean after crossing the Miyako Strait from the East China Sea on Monday.

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They also happened to take place on the same day that Biden said in Tokyo that the US would intervene militarily if the Chinese mainland were to reunify with the island of Taiwan by force, and Kishida said that Japan and the US “will monitor recent activities of the Chinese navy as well as movements related to joint exercises by China and Russia.”