Hong Kong blocks Taiwan from reaching disputed Pratas Islands, saying airspace around disputed territory is closed ‘until further notice’

Hong Kong blocks Taiwan from reaching disputed Pratas Islands, saying airspace around disputed territory is closed ‘until further notice’

Hong Kong has blocked Taiwan from flying to the Pratas Islands in the South China Sea after placing the flight path in a danger zone “until further notice”, according to new information released by Taipei.

The self-ruled island’s civil aviation authority on Friday night released a full transcript of the conversation between both sides, as new details emerged surrounding Hong Kong’s role in denying a Taiwan military plane permission to fly to the disputed territory on Thursday.

The development further stretched regional tensions following an intensification of Chinese military activity near the land mass in recent weeks.

During Thursday’s conversation, personnel at Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department (CAD) told their counterparts in Taipei there were “dangerous activities” below 26,000 feet, forcing the UNI Air flight carrying military and coastguard members to turn around before entering the city’s airspace.

Before the transcript was published, the CAD said it had “nothing further to supplement” when asked what the dangerous activities were and when it became aware of them. It declined to comment when contacted again on Saturday.