Chinese Navy Receives First Liaoning Aircraft Carrier
12:00 AM, September 25, 2012
Chinese navy received its first aircraft carrier, a former Soviet ship bought from Ukraine and refurbished, entered service on Tuesday. The Admiral Kuznetsov class Varyag aircraft carrier was 70% complete when China bought it from Ukraine for $20 million in 1998. The aircraft will pose no threat to its neighbors and will primarily be used for training and research in the navy. The 300-metre ship Liaoning was named after the China's main naval port, where its refit was carried out. “The vessel will increase China's capacity to defend, develop its capacity to cooperate on the high seas in dealing with non-traditional security threats and will be effective in defending the interests of state sovereignty, security and development”, the Chinese defence ministry quoted. The move comes in as China is involved in major diplomatic dispute with Vietnam and Philippines over gas exploration and with Japan over islands in East China sea.
Chinas first aircraft carrier Liaoning will take part in the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navys first combat drill to be held in the disputed South China Sea region, local media reports.
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