TOKYO - Japan scrambled fighter jets to head off aircraft approaching its airspace 1,168 times in fiscal 2016 amid China's increasing military activity, with the number exceeding the previous record set during the Cold War, the Defense Ministry said Thursday.
The number, also a record-high, is a sign of increased Chinese military activity in airspace above waters close to Japan.
To deal with the situation, the Japanese Air Self-Defense Force has doubled the number of planes it scrambles to meet each aircraft approaching Japan's airspace from two to four, according to government sources.
Japan also scrambled fighter jets 301 times in response to movements of Russian aircraft in fiscal 2016, while eight incidents involved Taiwanese aircraft.
Japan began announcing scramble statistics on a fiscal year basis in 1958.
The previous record of 944, marked in fiscal 1984, largely owed to the activity of the former Soviet Union.
In one notable incident in March this year, Japan scrambled fighter jets after a total of 13 Chinese aircraft were spotted flying between Japan's southern islands of Okinawa and Miyako.
Source: http://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20170414/p2g/00m/0dm/027000c Please note: I'm a bot! This story was generated and posted automatically. If you think that I'm not working as
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