Chinese Fighters 'Buzz' Canadian Planes Over Indo-Pacific Region
CANADA - Canadian government officials have become 'increasingly concerned' about Chinese aggression towards its aircraft in the Indo-Pacific after Chinese jets repeatedly buzzed a Canadian surveillance plane that was part of a United Nations mission over international waters in the region, according to Canadian Global News.
The Canadian news site stated that the jets are frequently flying as close as '20 to 1000 feet' from the Canadian aircraft. So close, in fact that the Canadian pilots were able to make eye contact with the Chinese pilots, sometimes seeing them raising their middle fingers.
"(That distance is) scary close at those high speeds, and it could lead to disaster in a crash" Charles Burton, who is a senior fellow at the Macdonald-Laurier Institute in Ottawa. "You do it too much, and eventually, sometime, it’s going to go wrong".
The Canadian CP-140 Aurora aircraft is participating in 'Operation Neon', which is a UN mission to 'monitor sanctions against North Korea' and also to keep the country from developing 'weapons of mass destruction' according to the Canadian news site.
Canada's Department of National Defense told Global News that these incidents "are of concern and increasing in frequency" and said that "in some instances, the (Canadian) air crew felt sufficiently at risk that they had to quickly modify their own flight path in order to increase separation and avoid a potential collision with the intercepting aircraft”.
Burton said "I’m completely puzzled as to why China would take the risk of fomenting an international incident that could lead to extremely heightened tensions if the Chinese aircraft leads to loss of Canadian life".
"And the fact the Chinese government is not responding to Canadian concerns, (not) seeking to rein in this kind of adventurism, is also very concerning" he added.