KARACHI:Pak-China Joint Air Exercise “Shaheen-IX” culminated at an Operational Air Base of PAF here Thursday.

Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan, Chief of the Air Staff Pakistan Air Force, was the chief guest at the closing ceremony. Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Nong Rong also attended the ceremony as guest of the honour. The ceremony commenced with playing of national anthems of both countries.

Expressing his views at the occasion, Nong Rong said, “International and regional strategic situation is undergoing profound changes with growing complexity in security environment. This calls for the collaboration of our two countries and two armed forces in maintaining peace and stability and to cope with shared challenges”. He also added that both Air Forces have achieved many breakthroughs and new heights in diversified battlefield environment during this exercise.

Addressing the exercise participants, the Air Chief said that the existing global security scenario coupled with the evolving dynamics of air warfare, called for enhanced partnership between Pakistan and China as indeed between our Armed Forces. He further added that It was heartening that with every passing year, Pakistan-China friendship became stronger and stronger. He also said that CPEC was a game changer and manifestation of our common objectives and destiny.” The Air Chief also expressed his gratitude to General Ding Laihang, Commander PLAAF for sending a large contingent to participate in the exercise despite Covid-19 pandemic.

The Exercise Shaheen IX witnessed participation of modern fighter jets and support elements from PAF and PLAAF. PAF regularly conducts similar operational exercises both inland and abroad to remain abreast of challenges and response strategies in contemporary threat environment. The 10th round of Shaheen Exercise is scheduled to take place in China next year.