Chinese actions over Senkakus spark more Japanese jet scrambles
YOKOSUKA NAVAL BASE, Japan — Chinese military activity near islands covered under the U.S.-Japan defense treaty resulted in a record number of Japanese fighter aircraft responses in recent months, Japan Defense Ministry officials say.
The Japan Air Self-Defense Force scrambled jets against Chinese aircraft about 200 combined times in April through June, compared with 114 incidents during the same period last year, defense officials told broadcaster NHK during a news conference Thursday.
Adm. Katsutoshi Kawano, chief of staff for Japan’s forces, said most of the incidents came near the Senkaku Islands, which have been administered by Japan since the U.S. returned them, along with Okinawa, in 1972.
In recent years, China has asserted what it calls an “indisputable” claim to the uninhabited islands, which it argues should have been returned along with Taiwan following World War II.
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