For the second day in a row, the Ministry of Defense in Taipei registered a record number of Chinese balloons. Six of the flying objects flew directly over the island. Their purpose is unclear.
Taiwan spotted eight Chinese balloons around the island for the second day in a row. As the Ministry of Defense in Taipei has now announced, the flying objects were spotted on Saturday between morning and afternoon (local time). They would have reached an altitude of around 3,600 to 10,500 meters. Six of the balloons flew directly over the island.
Eight Chinese balloons had already crossed the unofficial border between China and Taiwan on Friday. Taiwan has been monitoring flight movements with systematic measurements since December; never before have the authorities spotted more balloons than in the last few days.
Balloons part of China’s psychological warfare?
The exact purpose of the balloons is still controversial. Taiwan sees the flights as part of China’s psychological warfare. The Ministry of Defense in Taipei says they will monitor the situation and respond appropriately.
A year ago, a Chinese balloon flew over the USA before it was shot down by the American military. At the time, the US government accused China of using the balloon for espionage purposes. Beijing, on the other hand, spoke of a weather balloon for meteorological measurements. In June 2023, the US Department of Defense announced that the balloon had presumably not collected any data.
The Chinese government views Taiwan, which has been governed democratically for decades, as a breakaway province. Most recently, President Xi Jinping announced in his New Year’s address that Taiwan and China would “certainly” be reunified.
I have been working in the news industry for over 6 years, first as a reporter and now as an editor. I have covered politics extensively, and my work has appeared in major newspapers and online news outlets around the world. In addition to my writing, I also contribute regularly to 24 Hours World.