Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said that the country is expediting efforts to acquire military equipment to combat militancy from other resources as the US limits weapons sales to Islamabad.
In an exclusive interview with Arab News, Abbasi said: “We have major US weapons systems in our military, but we’ve also diversified. We have Chinese and European systems. Recently, for the first time we inducted Russian attack helicopters”.
After his returning from the UN General Assembly in New York in September, he clarified: “If one source dries up, we have no option but to go to another source. It may cost more, it may consume more resources, but we have to fight that war, and that’s what we emphasized to all the people that we met”.
“The days of Pakistan depending on the US to meet its military and other requirements are over,” he said.
In August, the US President Donald Trump said that Islamabad be designated a "state sponsor of terrorism" and its major non-NATO ally status be revoked to force it stop from supporting terrorist groups.
The criticism came as a part of his speech outlining the new US strategy to end the 16-year war in Afghanistan and bring peace and stability in the larger South Asian region.
Last year, the US Congress stopped the sale of eight F-16 fighter jets to Pakistan but the move did not affect the weapons needed to combat terrorists.
Earlier this year, Pakistan purchased an unspecified number of AW139 helicopters from Italian aerospace and defence firm, Leonardo S.p.A. Four Russian-made Mi-35M attack helicopters were delivered to Islamabad in August 2017. The US media noted that the Mi-35M was the export version of the Mi-24 gunship and was particularly suited for operations in mountainous terrain.
According to media reports, Pakistan Army Aviation could acquire up to 20 Mi-35Ms in the years ahead. Islamabad is also considering the Turkish Aerospace Industries T-129 attack helicopter or the Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group Z-10 helicopter gunship as an alternative to the Mi-35M.
In 2016, Pakistan signed a deal for eight conventional diesel-electric submarines with China, which reportedly cost between $4 billion to $5 billion. Besides, 250 to 300 JF-17 fighter planes will also be jointly developed by China and Pakistan.
Pakistan has offered to train Afghan security forces in its war against terrorism. The Pakistani Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa offered support to Afghanistan to train its security forces during his visit to the country
Russian and Pakistani troops held joint firing exercise using small arms in Karachay-Cherkessia, Southern Military District during the course of ‘Friendship 2017 army exercise. At the firing instruction the Russian scouts presented their Pakistani counterparts with the AGS-17 Plamya machine gun, RPG-7B antitank grenade launcher, NSVS Utes machine gun, SVD-S sniper rifle and Makarov, Yarygin and Stechkin pistols
The Pakistan Navy held a demonstration of live firing anti-ship missiles from a helicopter Saturday. In the demonstration of fire power, Pakistan Navy Helicopters, Sea King, fired air to surface anti-ship missile which successfully hit to the target with pinpoint accuracy in North Arabian Sea
The Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP) has raised objections over the new seven-storey building housing the US Embassy in Islamabad that it would allow surveillance of the government offices in its vicinity. The AGP expressed reservations claiming that ‘the rooftop of the building could be utilized to install surveillance devices that can be used to spy government offices in the surrounding
A Pakistani delegation visited Poland last week to discuss procurement of some 500,000-800,000 assault rifles in a requirement that could be worth US$2 billion. The potential of the acquisition and transfer of technology related to the production of small arms and ammunition was the main topic of talks between the board member of Maciej Lew-Mirski and the president of the Pakistan Ordnance Factory (POF), PGZ SA said in a statement last Friday
The Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) has received a Pakistan Air Force (PAF) JF-17 Thunder multi-role fighter at its Chengfei aircraft maintenance factory last Tuesday. Pakistan will soon get a major overhaul facility built at Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) The fighter has been in service with the PF since 2007
Russian Helicopters has started trials of its Ansat lightweight multipurpose helicopter in a hot climate in Pakistan. "The trials aim to confirm the possibilities of operating the rotocraft in high air temperatures
Russian defense ministry plans to deploy a military communications satellite from the Baikonur space center with the launch of Proton-M heavy carrier rocket on December 25 this year. "We have scheduled the next launch of a Proton carrier rocket for December 25 from the Baikonur space center
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