Archive for ‘Military’

09/03/2015

China hints Japan to be invited to war memorial parade | Reuters

China will welcome all national leaders to a military parade marking the 70th anniversary of the end of World War Two, the foreign minister said on Sunday, the strongest sign yet that it could invite wartime enemy Japan.

Sino-Japan relations have long been poisoned by what China sees as Japan’s failure to atone for its occupation of parts of the country before and during the war, and it rarely misses an opportunity to remind its people and the world of this.

In the last two years, ties have also deteriorated sharply because of a dispute over a chain of uninhabited islets in the East China Sea, though Chinese and Japanese leaders met last year in Beijing to try to reset relations.

But the remarks by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi come as the two countries plan to hold their first security talks in four years in Tokyo on March 19, an indication of a possible improvement in strained ties.

“Our goal is to remember history, commemorate the martyrs, cherish peace and look to the future,” Wang said of the parade at a briefing on the sidelines of China’s annual meeting of parliament.

“We will extend the invitation to the leaders of all relevant countries and international organizations. No matter who it is, as long as they come in sincerity, we welcome them,” Wang said in response to a question about whether Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe would be invited.

via China hints Japan to be invited to war memorial parade | Reuters.

20/02/2015

Turkey eyes deal with China on missile defense despite NATO concern | Reuters

Turkey‘s defense minister said on Thursday the country does not plan to integrate a new missile defense system with NATO infrastructure and officials said a $3.4 billion deal with China was still under consideration.

NATO member Turkey chose China Precision Machinery Import and Export Corp as a preferred bidder in 2013, prompting U.S. and Western concern about security and the compatibility of the weaponry with NATO systems.

Defense Minister Ismet Yilmaz, in a written response to a parliamentary question, indicated Ankara planned to go ahead with the Chinese system, saying the evaluation of bids had been completed and no new offers received.

“The system in question will be integrated with the national system for Turkey’s defense and will be used without integrating with NATO,” Yilmaz said.

However, other government officials later made clear that did not mean a final decision had yet been reached.

“We are continuing discussions with all the bidders,” the undersecretariat for defense industries said in a statement.

via Turkey eyes deal with China on missile defense despite NATO concern | Reuters.

14/02/2015

Military corruption: Rank and vile | The Economist

SO EXTENSIVE was the stash of jade, gold and cash found in the basement of General Xu Caihou’s mansion in Beijing that at least ten lorries were needed to haul it away, according to the Chinese press last October. Given General Xu’s recent retirement as the highest ranking uniformed officer in the armed forces, this was astonishing news. General Xu, the media said, had accepted “extremely large” bribes, for which he now faces trial. It will be the first of such an exalted military figure since the Communist Party came to power in 1949.

The People’s Liberation Army (PLA)—as the Chinese army, navy and air force are collectively known—has not fought a war for 35 years. But the world’s largest fighting force is now engaged in a fierce battle at home against corrosion within its ranks.

Xi Jinping, China’s president (pictured, pointing), has taken his sweeping anti-corruption campaign into the heart of the PLA, seemingly unafraid to show that a hallowed institution is also deeply flawed. In January the PLA took the unprecedented step of revealing that 15 generals and another senior officer were under investigation or awaiting trial. It said it would launch a stringent review of recruitment, promotions, procurements and all of its financial dealings in order to root out corruption.

One reason Mr Xi is keen to clean up the army is to ensure that it remains a bulwark of party rule. The PLA is the party’s armed wing—its soldiers swear allegiance to it rather than the people or the country. All officers are party members and each company is commanded jointly by an officer in charge of military affairs and another whose job it is to ensure troops toe the party line. Mr Xi has repeatedly stressed the party’s “absolute leadership” over the PLA. His definition of a “strong army” puts “obedience to the party’s commands” before “capability of winning wars”.

via Military corruption: Rank and vile | The Economist.

06/02/2015

Thailand boosts military ties with China amid U.S. spat | Reuters

China and Thailand agreed on Friday to boost military ties over the next five years, from increasing intelligence sharing to fighting transnational crime, as the ruling junta seeks to counterbalance the country’s alliance with Washington.

China's Defence Minister Chang Wanquan, accompanied by Thailand's Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwan (L), reviews a guard of honour during his visit to Thailand, at the Defence Ministry in Bangkok February 6, 2015. REUTERS/Chaiwat Subprasom

The agreement came during a two-day visit by China’s Defence Minister Chang Wanquan to Bangkok, and as Thailand’s military government looks to cultivate Beijing’s support amid Western unease over a delayed return to democracy.

“China has agreed to help Thailand increase protection of its own country and advise on technology to increase Thailand’s national security,” Thai Defence Minister General Prawit Wongsuwan told reporters.

“China will not intervene in Thailand’s politics but will give political support and help maintain relationships at all levels. This is China’s policy.”

via Thailand boosts military ties with China amid U.S. spat | Reuters.

17/01/2015

IAF gets first light combat aircraft – The Hindu

Thirty—two years after the project was sanctioned, the first indigenously—built Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) was handed over by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar to the IAF on Saturday, a red letter day for the Indian defence and aerospace sector.

A file photo of the Light Combat Aircraft 'Tejas' at the Yelahanka Air Base in Bengaluru.

The handover signals the start of a process of induction of the fighters being built at home under a project which has already cost the exchequer nearly Rs. 8,000 crore.

The entire project by the DRDO and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited is estimated to cost over Rs. 30,000 crore.

The aircraft that has been handed over has got Initial Operational Clearance—II, which signifies that Tejas is airworthy in different conditions, sources said. The Final Operational Clearance (FOC) is expected by the year—end.

This version of the aircraft lacks the latest electronic warfare suite, which was integrated into one of the LCAs two weeks ago, mid—air refuelling and long—range missiles capabilities, among other things that the FOC—configuration aircraft will have.

The IOC—I was granted to the aircraft, being built by state—owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), in January 2011.

via IAF gets first light combat aircraft – The Hindu.

11/11/2014

China unveils sophisticated stealth fighter aircraft | Reuters

China unveiled a sophisticated new stealth fighter jet at an air show on Tuesday, a show of muscle during a visit by U.S. President Barack Obama for an Asia-Pacific summit.

A J-31 stealth fighter of the Chinese People's Liberation Army Air Force is seen during a test flight ahead of the 10th China International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition in Zhuhai, Guangdong province, November 10, 2014. REUTERS/Alex Lee

China hopes the much-anticipated J-31 stealth aircraft, developed by the Aviation Industry Corp of China (Avic), the country’s top aircraft maker, will compete with U.S.-made hardware in export markets.

The twin-engine fighter jet was unveiled at the China International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition in the southern city of Zhuhai, an annual event at which China shows off its military technology, a Reuters witness said.

The J-31 conducted a demonstration but was not put on display afterwards although a mock-up version was on show.

via China unveils sophisticated stealth fighter aircraft | Reuters.

07/11/2014

India’s Aging Military Equipment Claims Another Life – India Real Time – WSJ

Indian warships and aircraft are continuing to scour the seas off the country’s southeastern coast in search of four sailors who went missing after a torpedo recovery vessel sank on Thursday evening claiming the life of one sailor.

A navy official said the A 72 vessel, that is over 30 years old, sank while on a mission to “recover practice torpedoes fired by fleet ships during a routine exercise, when she experienced flooding in one of her compartments”.

Soon after the incident, navy ships rescued 23 of the 28 sailors on board, he said.

“Nine ships and some aircraft have been deployed to look for” the missing sailors,” the official said.

Despite the increased focus on safety, India’s armed forces, particularly the navy, have been hit by a series of accidents recently, some of them deadly.

In March, a naval commander died during a gas leak in destroyer that was under-construction in a shipyard in Mumbai.

On Feb. 26,  after a fire on INS Sindhuratna—a Soviet-built submarine–left two submariners dead, India’s naval chief, Admiral D.K. Joshi, resigned taking “moral responsibility” for a series of fatal naval accidents under his watch.

The most devastating took place in August last year when 18 sailors died after explosions and a fire rocked a Russian-built sub, INS Sindhurakshak, in a Mumbai dockyard.

The incidents cast a shadow over the South Asian country’s efforts to modernize its military mainly by replacing Soviet-era equipment.

Prompted in part by the rapid modernization of the Chinese navy and buildup of China’s naval presence in the Indian Ocean, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government is increasing its focus on maritime security.

via India’s Aging Military Equipment Claims Another Life – India Real Time – WSJ.

07/11/2014

China, Japan set aside isle row, paving way for leaders to meet | Reuters

China and Japan agreed on Friday to work on improving ties and signaled willingness to put a bitter row over disputed islands on the back burner, paving the way for their leaders to meet at an Asian-Pacific summit next week.

The agreement, ahead of an expected ice-breaking chat between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Chinese President Xi Jinping at the gathering in Beijing, signals a thaw in ties between the world’s second- and third-biggest economies.

Relations have been soured over the past two years by the territorial row, regional rivalry and the bitter legacy of Japan’s wartime occupation of China.

Abe said the two sides were making final arrangements for one-on-one talks, although neither he nor China’s foreign ministry confirmed that the talks were set.

“Both Japan and China are coming to the view that it would benefit not just the two countries but regional stability if a summit is held,” he told a TV program.

via China, Japan set aside isle row, paving way for leaders to meet | Reuters.

05/11/2014

India Said to Pull Warships From Kolkata on Terror Threat – Businessweek

India pulled two naval warships out of the Kolkata port yesterday after receiving intelligence that they might be targeted by terrorists, a navy officer familiar with the matter said.

The INS Khukri and INS Sumitra had entered the port of the city previously known as Calcutta late Nov. 3 and had been scheduled to stay until tomorrow for public viewings, said the official, who asked not to be identified because the intelligence data isn’t public. The public visiting program has been canceled, the official said.

Kolkata remains on high alert, K.S. Dhatwalia, a spokesman for India’s Home Ministry, said by phone from New Delhi today. He declined to comment on precautions Indian police and intelligence agencies are taking to thwart an attack and said he wasn’t aware of who was behind the potential plot.

via India Said to Pull Warships From Kolkata on Terror Threat – Businessweek.

03/11/2014

Chinese submarine docks in Sri Lanka despite Indian concerns | Reuters

Submarine Changzheng-2 and warship Chang Xing Dao arrived at the port on Friday, seven weeks after another Chinese submarine, a long-range deployment patrol, had called at the same port ahead of a visit to South Asia by Chinese President Xi Jinping.

“A submarine and a warship have docked at Colombo harbor. They called on Oct. 31 and will be here for five days for refueling and crew refreshment,” Sri Lankan navy spokesman Kosala Warnakulasuriya said.

“This is nothing unusual. Since 2010, 230 warships have called at Colombo port from various countries on goodwill visits and for refueling and crew refreshment.”

However, the frequency of Chinese visits has become a concern for New Delhi, Indian officials have told Reuters.

“India has raised concerns over this but not aggressively,” an Indian official familiar with diplomatic discussions between the neighbors told Reuters.

China has invested heavily in Sri Lanka in recent years, funding airports, roads, railways and ports, a development that has unsettled India, traditionally the closest economic partner of the island nation of 21 million people.

India has already raised concerns over an aircraft maintenance facility following speculation it could be built in the eastern port city of Trincomalee, which India considers a strategic location in national security terms.

via Chinese submarine docks in Sri Lanka despite Indian concerns | Reuters.

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