*Source: DTN News / Int'l Media
(NSI News Source Info) NEW DELHI, India - November 28, 2009: Expressing concern at the growing “military nexus” between China and Pakistan, India Friday hoped that Beijing would reciprocate Indian overtures to resolve outstanding issues.
Pakistan and China have been cooperating for a number of years on the JF-17/ FC-1 Thunder, a low-medium performance, low-cost aircraft that has attracted interest and orders from a number of 3rd World air forces. In November 2009, a long-rumored deal was announced for China’s Jian-10/ FC-20 4+ generation fighter, whose overall performance compares well with the F-16C/D Block 52 aircraft that Pakistan has ordered from the United States. The J-10 has been reported as a derivative of the 1980s Israeli Lavi project, and reportedly incorporates an Israeli fly-by-wire control base that was transferred in the project’s early years. The change in relations that followed the Tienanmen Square massacre hurt the J-10 project badly, however, forcing the replacement of planned Western avionics and engines with Chinese and Russian equipment. The required redesign was very extensive, affected all areas of the airframe, and took over a decade, amounting to the development of a new aircraft. The first operational J-10 unit entered service with the PLAAF in July 2004. China has reportedly ordered 100 J-10s to date. The initial Pakistani order is for 2 squadrons, but could expand as technical cooperation and orders increase. The $1+ billion sale represents the J-10’s first export order… but almost certainly not its last.*
Speaking at the 44th Foundation Day of the Institute of Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) here, Defence Minister A.K. Antony said: “The increasing nexus between China and Pakistan in military sphere remains an area of serious concern. We have to carry out continuous appraisals of Chinese military capabilities and shape our responses accordingly.” “We are hopeful that China will reciprocate the initiatives aimed at mutual trust-building and understanding,” said Antony. China has recently contracted to supply 36 J-10 fighter jets to Pakistan. China and Pakistan have also joined hands to develop third generation fighter aircraft JF-17. The defence minister said that India was keen to develop “friendlier” relations with its neighbouring countries, including China and Pakistan, but at the same time there are issues which are of concern to it. “We have always striven for peaceful relations with all our neighbours. Even with a vibrant democracy and a prospering economy, we cannot ignore the security calculus. Our prime minister’s willingness to resume the dialogue with Pakistan must be seen in this context,” asserted Antony. On Pakistan, Antony said that the terror infrastructure on its territory remains intact. “Pakistan must put an end to terror activities emanating from its soil. However, the terror infrastructure on the ground remains intact — and is actually thriving. Pakistan is yet to demonstrate any will to take speedy action against terrorists and international criminals. We need to closely monitor the developments in Pakistan,” Antony said.