• Japan ‘prime target’ in China air zone: state-run media

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    Chinese state-run media Friday identified Japan as Beijing’s “prime target” in its newly declared air defence zone, calling for “timely countermeasures without hesitation” if Tokyo defies it.

    However, other countries which have sent military aircraft into the air defence identification zone (ADIZ), including the United States and South Korea, should be largely ignored, the Global Times said.

    “We should carry out timely countermeasures without hesitation against Japan when it challenges China’s newly declared ADIZ,” the paper, which is close to China’s ruling Communist party, said in an editorial.

    China’s ADIZ which was declared on Saturday requires aircraft to provide their flight plan, declare their nationality and maintain two-way radio communication, or face “defensive emergency measures”.

    The zone overlaps those declared by Japan and South Korea, and includes airspace over East China Sea islands disputed with Tokyo.

    The move triggered US and Japanese accusations of provocation, and criticism from South Korea and Australia.

    Tokyo and Seoul said Thursday they had defied the zone with military overflights, showing a united front after Washington sent B-52 bombers through the airspace.

    China’s military sent several fighter jets and an early warning aircraft into the zone on Thursday, the official Xinhua news agency reported, after first patrolling it on Saturday.

    Shen Jinke, spokesman for the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force, said the move was “a defensive measure and in line with international common practices”.

    The Global Times editorial, headlined “Japan prime target of ADIZ tussle”, said: “If the US does not go too far, we will not target it in safeguarding our air defence zone.

    “What we should do at present is firmly counter provocative actions from Japan.”

    The paper, which often takes a nationalistic tone, added that Australia can be “ignored” as the two countries have no major grievances, and that Beijing has “no need to change its actions” towards Seoul, given that South Korea has its own “tensions” with Japan.

    Officials in China have previously accused the US and Japan — which both have ADIZs — of double standards, saying the real provocateur is Tokyo. AFP

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    1. It is part of the US-Japan agreement for Japan to demilitarize in exchange for US protection as a result of Japan’s imperialistic history. China should know that it can only push Japan so much before the US reacts.
      Yes, US has an ADIZ but they do not shoot foreign planes in that area. Case in point, when Russian fighter planes used go to Cuba and entered US’s ADIZ, US sent fighter planes to shadow Russia’s until they were off the area. There were no incidents because both parties held their fires. US also did not offend nor violate the sovereignty of its neighbors by its ADIZ.
      The sore point in all of this is: China threatened to shoot down foreign planes in its ADIZ (that they declare without consulting those who regularly use that air space). China touts its willingness to negotiate peacefully but its behavior towards its neighbors does not reflect that. China’s authoritarian strategy of intimidation and giving orders to sovereign nations has to stop and it needs to walk the talk. Respect for its neighbors will go a long way in preventing and diffusing heated issues.