Millions of people on Tuesday night (August 2) tuned in to track a flight carrying US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan.

It was the “most tracked live flight of all time,” according to flight-tracking site Flightradar24, where more than 700,000 people watched.

This is the highest since Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou’s chartered homecoming flight was tracked in September 2021 in the sky.

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On Tuesday, millions more watched livestreams of the event on Weibo, the popular Chinese social media platform.

Speaking to BuzzFeed News, Flightradar24 spokesperson Ian Petchenik said a massive number of social media users overwhelmed Flightradar24 — so much so that a waiting room had to be set up to prevent the site from crashing.

“An unprecedented, sustained interest in this particular flight led to extremely heavy load on Flightradar24 infrastructure,” Petchenik said. “Our teams immediately began efforts to maintain the stability of our services.”

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The outpouring of social media users showing interest to track the US House Speaker’s flight came due to the historic nature of the visit. Nancy Pelosi is the highest-ranked US politician to visit Taiwan in 25 years.

Pelosi’s visit to the self-governed island has increased tensions between the US and China, which claims Taiwan is its territory. Top Chinese officials have condemned Pelosi for the visit, and the People’s Liberation Army announced it would hold live-fire military drills in the area.

In a statement, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that the visit “has a severe impact on the political foundation of China-US relations, and seriously infringes upon China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

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“It gravely undermines peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, and sends a seriously wrong signal to the separatist forces for ‘Taiwan independence,'” the statement added. “China firmly opposes and sternly condemns this, and has made serious démarche and strong protest to the United States.”

Even US President Joe Biden warned against the trip due to security concerns, saying the “military thinks it is not a good idea right now,” Politico reported.

Earlier, Meng Wanzhou’s chartered homecoming flight in 2021 was the most tracked plane in the sky, as a jubilant Chinese public watched the years-long, multilateral legal battle over the Huawei Technologies financial chief’s business dealings finally come to a close.

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According to reports, more than 9,500 users of FlightRadar24 had glued their eyes on the aircraft’s journey from Vancouver to Shenzhen, the home base of the tech giant founded by Meng’s father, Ren Zhengfei.

Meng’s chartered Air China flight, CA552, was the only international arrival scheduled for Shenzhen’s Baoan airport, according to the information board in its largely deserted arrivals hall. Due to the novel Covid-19 pandemic, Shenzhen had virtually no international flights.

Meng had reached a deal with prosecutors in New York that effectively resolved a US fraud case that had kept her in legal limbo in Vancouver for nearly three years following an extradition request.