Japan scrambles record number of military jets

Tokyo ordered its jets to the skies 1,168 times in the fiscal year through March, mostly in response to an increase in approaching Chinese aircraft.

Published: 13th April 2017 06:59 PM  |   Last Updated: 13th April 2017 06:59 PM   |  A+A-

Foreign aircraft like Rafale fighter jets were seen at the show. (Vinod Kumar T | EPS)

Image for representation only (Vinod Kumar T | EPS)


TOKYO: Japan's military scrambled a record number of jets last year mostly in response to an increase in approaching Chinese aircraft, the government said today.     

Tokyo ordered its jets to the skies 1,168 times in the fiscal year through March, the defence ministry said, with 73 per cent of the missions against aircraft either known to be or believed to originate from China.   

"Activities of Chinese jets are on the rise in terms of their frequency, area, and duration," said Admiral Katsutoshi Kawano, head of Japan's joint chiefs of staff.     

"Considering the modernising trend of the Chinese military, we expect this to continue," he told a press conference.     

The total number of scrambles marked an increase of 295 from the year before, the ministry said, noting that none of the cases resulted in violations of Japan's airspace.     

Japan and China are at odds over a set of uninhabited islands in the East China Sea that sit in rich fishing grounds.     

The islands, known as the Senkakus in Japan and the Diaoyus in China, are a running sore in Tokyo's relations with Beijing.     

Japan has administrative control of the islets but China claims they have been part of its territory for centuries.     

The two countries have clashed diplomatically over their ownership, with both sides sending ships and aircraft to nearby waters to assert their claims.   

Japanese officials believe China has been trying to analyse the capacity and response patterns of Japan's defence and coastguard personnel.


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp