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Beijing (AFP) – China on Friday scrambled fighter jets to monitor U.S. and Japanese aircraft which entered its new air defense zone, state media said.

“Several combat aircraft were scrambled to verify the identities” of U.S. and Japanese aircraft entering the air defense identification zone that Beijing declared last weekend, the state-run Xinhua news agency said, citing air force spokesman Shen Jinke.

The Chinese aircraft, which included at least two fighter jets, identified two U.S. surveillance aircraft and 10 Japanese aircraft including an F-15 warplane, Shen said.

Shen said that the air force had a mission to monitor foreign aircraft inside the zone “throughout the entire process, with timely identification”.

China’s announcement of the zone, which covers islands which are the subject of a bitter territorial dispute with Japan, has been seen as raising tensions in the region.

China’s state media called Friday for “timely countermeasures without hesitation” if Japan violates the country’s newly declared air zone.

Japan and South Korea both said Thursday they had disregarded China’s new air defense identification zone (ADIZ), showing a united front after US B-52 bombers also entered the area.

Amy Coney Barrett

Photo from Fox 45 Baltimore/ Facebook

Donald Trump will select U.S. Appeals Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett as his Supreme Court pick Saturday, multiple news outlets confirmed with White House officials on Friday — and the outlook couldn't be more bleak for reproductive rights, LGBTQ rights, immigration, and the future of health care in the United States.

According to the New York Times, Trump "will try to force Senate confirmation before Election Day."

"The president met with Judge Barrett at the White House this week and came away impressed with a jurist that leading conservatives told him would be a female Antonin Scalia," the Times reported.

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