The Pakistan-China joint air exercise “Shaheen-IX” recently came to an end. The ninth edition of Shaheen exercises aimed to increase the combat readiness of both countries to tackle emerging geostrategic challenges.
China’s J-10C, J-11B fighter jets, KJ-500 early warning aircraft, and Y-8 electronic warfare aircraft, and Pakistan’s JF-17 and Mirage III fighter jets participated in the drills.
Shaheen series drills are being organized each year since 2011. Both Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) participate in the joint drill.
According to Chinese defense analysts, Chinese pilots have learned aggressive maneuvers from their Pakistani counterparts during Shaheen-IX.
On the other hand, Pakistani pilots gained invaluable experience by using Chinese J-10C and J-11B fighter jets to simulate the Indian Rafale and Su-30 fighter jets.
The Chinese J-10C and J-11B fighter jets can aptly simulate India’s fighter jets in mock battles, said Fu Qianshao, a Chinese military aviation expert.
Qianshao noted that the J-10C is a mid-sized Chinese fighter jet that has the size, aerodynamic characteristics, aviation and weapon systems, and overall combat capability similar to the France-made Rafale.
Meanwhile, the J-11B heavy fighter jet has a very similar appearance to India’s Su-30 fighter jet but has an edge over it where the avionics system is concerned.
Besides, both air forces focused on large scale confrontation, including large scale aerial battles and use of forces in mass and close-quarters aerial support during the ninth edition of the exercise.
On the completion of the Shaheen-IX, Ding Yuanfang, a PLAAF deputy brigade commander, said:
Unlike previous Shaheen series exercises, this time we comprehensively deployed aviation forces and paratroopers, and added real combat-oriented training courses like maritime training for the first time.