Two Russian warships were reportedly spotted Tuesday off the eastern coast of Taiwan, and the island nation dispatched its own aircraft and ships to track the movement of the warships.
The Russian frigates had been spotted "sailing from south to north in the waters off our eastern coast" as of 11 pm local time (15:00 GMT), according to a statement released by the Ministry of National Defence late on Tuesday.
They "departed from our response zone" and proceeded southeast off the port city of Suao, which is the location of a significant naval base for Taiwan, it was added. The distance between the warships and the island's coast was not specified.
Self-ruled Chinese ships and aircraft are reportedly operating near-daily around the island, according to Taiwan. Beijing claims ownership of the region and has not ruled out using force to further its goals.
However, the presence of Russian warships is more peculiar.
A group of ships from the Russian Pacific Fleet reportedly entered the southern Philippine Sea on Tuesday after "crossing the South China Sea," according to the Russian news agency Interfax.
According to Interfax, the warships were engaged in "a simulated naval battle to repel a missile attack of a simulated enemy from the sea" as part of a long-distance sea crossing.
Following Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, Taiwan has joined the United States, as well as its neighbors Japan and South Korea, in enacting extensive sanctions against Russia.