Pakistan Navy welcomes potential exercises with, visits by Chinese aircraft carriers: Pakistan Navy chief
Published: Feb 08, 2021 09:57 AM

The picture shows aircraft carrier Shandong berths at a naval port in Sanya. China's first domestically-made aircraft carrier Shandong (Hull 17) was officially commissioned to the PLA Navy at a military port in Sanya, South China's Hainan Province, on the afternoon of December 17, 2019, making China one of the few countries in the world that have multiple carriers. Chinese President Xi Jinping attended the commissioning ceremony for the new aircraft carrier, which was named after China's eastern province of Shandong, and handed military flag to Senior Captain Lai Yijun, commander of the ship. Photo:China Military


The Pakistan Navy would like to conduct an exercise with aircraft carriers of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) and welcome their visits, Admiral M Amjad Khan Niazi, Chief of the Naval Staff of the Pakistan Navy, told the Global Times in a recent exclusive interview.

"It is heartening to know that the PLA Navy now operates two aircraft carriers," Admiral Niazi said in response to a Global Times question on if Pakistan would invite Chinese aircraft carriers to visit Pakistan.

Joining the first aircraft carrier of the PLA Navy, the Liaoning, the carrier Shandong entered service with the PLA Navy in December 2019.

"The Pakistan Navy would like to conduct an exercise with these carriers whenever an opportunity arises. Moreover, the PLA Navy and Pakistan Navy ships regularly visit each other's ports. In the same stride, the Pakistan Navy would continue to welcome further visits by PLA Navy ships, including aircraft carriers," Admiral Niazi said.

Pakistan maintains close and ever-growing ties with China, which has been one of the most steadfast and reliable partners for peace in the region, and the Chinese Navy hosts a number of modern and technologically advanced platforms in their inventory, Admiral Niazi said, noting that "operating with these modern and high-tech platforms affords us an opportunity to refine our tactics and procedures. The Pakistan Navy and the PLA Navy hold regular bilateral [Exercise SEA GUARDIAN] and multilateral [Exercise AMAN] exercises."

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