BEIJING (Alliance News) - China's air force is on \"high alert\" and has sent patrols into its new air defence zone in the East China Sea, the Defence Ministry said Friday.
China sent fighter jets and reconnaissance aircraft to monitor two flights made by US military planes and 10 by Japanese military aircraft, Chinese state media reported People's Liberation Army spokesman Shen Jianke as saying.
China would remain vigilant and take measures to \"deal with diverse air threats\" in its airspace, he said earlier in a statement posted on the ministry's website.
The patrols were \"a defensive measure and in line with international common practice,\" Shen was quoted as saying.
The air defence identification zone (ADIZ) was declared Saturday and covers the Japanese-controlled Senkaku islands, which lie near oil and gas reserves and are claimed by China as the Diaoyu and Taiwan as the Tiaoyutai.