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Pakistan inducts advanced Chinese missile defence system

Pakistan has inducted an advanced Chinese made LY-80 Surface to Air missile defence system to secure its airspace from any sort of misadventure, a statement from the ISPR said.

Chief of Army Staff Gen Qamar Bajwa, who was the chief guest on the occasion, said the defence system would enhance our capabilities to defend the motherland.

The LY-80 is a Chinese-made ground-to-air defence missile system. This is a land based version of the HQ-16 system used in ships (and fired from VLS (Vertical Launch System) containers. The HQ-16A is based on a joint development of the Russian Buk-M1 (SA-11 ‘Gadfly’) and Ural/Buk-2M (SA-17 ‘Grizzly’) Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM) systems, for use from mobile ground vehicles and later from ships.

The missile is able to engage aerial targets at high altitude; the mid-range LY-80 is also able to intercept very low-flying targets at a distance of up to about 40 kilometres, filling the gap between the HQ-7 short-range SAM and the HQ-9 long-range SAM systems.

In May 2016, Pentagon had released a report China was considering to establish additional naval logistics hubs in countries with which it has a long-standing friendly relationship and similar strategic interests, “such as Pakistan”

The report pointed out that Pakistan remains China’s “primary customer” for conventional weapons and China engages in both arms sales and defence industrial cooperation with Pakistan.

“We have noticed an increase in capability and force posture by the Chinese military in areas close to the border with India,” Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defence for East Asia Abraham M Denmark told reporters after submitting the report to Congress.

“It is difficult to say how much of this is driven by internal considerations to maintain internal stability, and how much of it is an external consideration,” he added.

The Pentagon report also shed light on tensions between China and India as a cause of concern. “Tensions remain along disputed portions of the Sino-Indian border, where both sides patrol with armed forces,” it warned.


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