05:30 GMT +317 February 2019
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    Japan Denies Locking Missiles Onto Chinese Fighter Jets Over East China Sea

    © AFP 2018 / Kazuhiro NOGI
    Asia & Pacific
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    Tokyo has refuted Beijing's accusations that Japan Air Self-Defense Force jets used fire-control radars to lock onto Chinese fighter jets during a patrol flight over the East China Sea, local media reported Tuesday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) On Monday, the Chinese Defense Ministry said that on June 17 the country's two Su-30 fighter jets had been approached by two Japanese F-15 warplanes during routine patrol over the East China Sea air defense identification zone (ADIZ). According to the ministry, the Japanese jets used fire-control radars to lock on the Chinese planes. The incident was over after the Chinese Su-30s had taken measures prompting the Japanese fighter jets to fly away.

    Japanese Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Koichi Hagiuda said Tuesday, as quoted by The Japan Times, that the country's fighter jets had "never taken any of the provocative actions as claimed" by China’s Defense Ministry.

    Locking a fire-control radar onto a jet means that the aircraft is ready to fire a weapon and the pilot in the targeted aircraft has a special system signaling that the aircraft is in danger.

    Relations between Japan and China have been strained amid a dispute over uninhabited islands in the East China Sea. The Japanese, who have claimed the islands since the 19th century, call them the Senkaku Islands, the name mostly recognized globally, while in China they are known as the Diaoyu Islands.

    In 2014, Japan and China agreed to reduce tensions over the disputed islands. However, Chinese vessels repeatedly sailed into Japanese territorial waters around the Senkaku Islands in 2015.


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    Su-30, F-15, China, Japan