Chinese fighter jet intercepts Australian patrol aircraft

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Japan’s Sankei News on Wednesday, January 11 reported that a Chinese Shenyang J-11 air superiority fighter intercepted an Australian AP-3C Orion patrol aircraft while the latter flew over the South China Sea.

The incident took place on September 26 last year, while it was only at the mid December 2016 the Australian spoke its side during a meeting between Japanese, US and Australian officials.

Australia claims its aircraft operating in the area around the South China Sea are periodcally obstructed by Chinese military aircraft.

Submarine Matters International (SMI), Director Peter Coates, said he thinks “the Japanese government strategy behind such late release might be to encourage the Australian government and/or military to be more active in patrols and Freedom of Navigation Operations (FONOP)s in the South China Sea against China’s claims.”

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