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Chinese aircraft crossed median line of Taiwan Strait

Chinese aircraft crossed median line of Taiwan Strait Tensions between China and Taiwan have escalated (photo: Getty Images)

Taiwan's authorities reported a group of Chinese aircraft crossing the median line of the Taiwan Strait a day after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken concluded his visit to China, according to Reuters.

Taiwan's Ministry of Defense reported that as of 9:30 a.m. local time (01:30 GMT) on Saturday, April 27, it had detected 22 Chinese military aircraft, including Su-30 fighters, with 12 of them crossing the median line to the north and center of Taiwan.

The Taiwanese Ministry of Defense stated that the aircraft were involved in a joint combat readiness patrol with Chinese military ships, adding that Taiwanese aircraft and ships responded appropriately. No further details were provided.

China's Ministry of Defense did not respond to calls for comment on the situation during non-working hours on Saturday.

Once serving as an unofficial border between the two sides, a line that neither military crossed, Chinese military aircraft now regularly fly over it. China does not recognize the existence of this line.

Taiwan President-elect Lai Ching-te takes office on May 20 after winning January's election. Beijing considers him a dangerous separatist and has rebuffed his repeated calls for talks.

On Thursday, Lai stated that China must have the confidence to negotiate with Taiwan's lawfully elected government. Like outgoing President Tsai Ing-wen, Lai says only the people of Taiwan can determine their future.

Blinken's visit to Taiwan

From April 24 to 26, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited Taiwan for a three-day trip. The goal of the visit was to bridge the gaps between the two countries.

During the visit, the head of American diplomacy met with Chinese President Xi Jinping. During the meeting, Blinken urged Beijing to refrain from cooperating with Russia, warning that the US would strengthen sanctions against China otherwise.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi warned Blinken about the accumulation of problems between the world's largest economies due to the risk of US sanctions for supporting Russia.