US puts record number of eyes in the skies off China coast in July

  • Beijing-based think tank counts 50 sorties by American military aircraft over South China Sea in first three weeks
  • Numerous reconnaissance flights have ventured close to Chinese airspace on southern coast

Liu Zhen

Liu Zhen in Beijing, SCMP Published: 8:00pm, 25 Jul, 2020

American E-8C surveillance planes have made multiple flights close to the Chinese coast in the past week. Photo: Handout

American E-8C surveillance planes have made multiple flights close to the Chinese coast in the past week. Photo: Handout

The United States has ramped up its aerial reconnaissance of the Chinese coast and the South China Sea to record levels, according to a Beijing-based think tank. In the past week alone, US air force E-8C surveillance planes were spotted closer than 100 nautical miles to the southeast coast of Guangdong province on four separate occasions, the South China Sea Strategic Situation Probing Initiative (SCSPI) said.

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