Twenty-seven Chinese warplanes flew into Taiwan’s air defence zone yesterday, Taipei said, after United States House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited the self-governed island that Beijing considers its own territory.

The defence ministry said in a tweet: “27 PLA aircraft… entered the surrounding area of (Republic of China) on August 3, 2022.”

In response to the incursion, the self-ruled island dispatched fighter jets and deployed missile systems to fend off Beijing’s actions.

China reportedly sent 16 Chinese Su-30 fighters and 11 other jets into the zone—with 22 of the aircraft crossing the median line separating China and Taiwan—the island’s defence ministry told Reuters  yesterday.

The latest mission from the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) was among a series of moves China has made after Pelosi touched down in Taiwan amid warnings from Beijing. Her visit, which received bipartisan support on Capitol Hill, was the first from a high-level U.S. official in 25 years.

China also summoned U.S. Ambassador Nicholas Burns to Beijing and halted some food trade with Taiwan in retaliation for Pelosi’s stop on the island.

China had already cautioned Pelosi with war planes before she arrived in Taipei on Tuesday.

On Monday night, Chinese Ambassador to the United States Qin Gang shared a video showcasing the PLA on Twitter, writing, “This is the People’s Liberation Army, the guardian of the Chinese people for 95 years, who will not sit idly by when it comes to safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

Chinese military exercises are expected to take place within Taiwan’s defense territory this week, an unprecedented move that a senior Taiwanese official told Reuters would amount to “a sea and air blockade of Taiwan.”

According to the PLA, the drills include “long-range live ammunition shooting” in the Taiwan Strait, and some would be as close as 12 nautical miles to the island’s shore.

Pelosi, a staunch defender of Taiwan, defended her trip on Tuesday, saying she traveled to the island “to make unequivocally clear that we will not abandon our commitment to Taiwan.”

Taiwan’s independence has long been controversial. While Taiwan is self-governed, China has held that the province will eventually join the nation under its One China Policy.