Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa emphasized on the importance of joint air drills with China on Friday. His statement was part of his remarks during the Pak-China Joint Air Exercise Shaheen-IX which was held at an airbase. The exercise, which features the Pakistan Air Force and the People’s Liberation Army Air Force, is held annually, with the hosting done by both countries on an alternating basis.
Speaking at the occasion, Gen Bajwa stated: “The joint exercise will improve combat capacity of both air forces substantially and also enhance interoperability between them with greater strength and harmony.” Gen Bajwa also said that the joint drills were important “to increase combat readiness of both countries to face emerging geo-strategic challenges.” Furthermore, he praised the PAF for its professionalism and dedication and claimed that these very traits made it one of the best air forces in the world. He also suggested improving inter-services harmony and synergy for best operational results.
Tensions have been rising in South Asia from some time. While India and Pakistan have had tense relations due to the Kashmir issue, India also had clashes with China, the first since 1965, earlier this year. This altercation has affected the politics of the region, and Pakistan-China joint drills are a reminder of the strength of their friendship.