China Flies Armed Jets over Disputed Islands

China flew armed fighter jets over the South China Sea in response to the U.S. sailing a destroyer near disputed islands in the area, according to multiple news reports.

Last week, the USS Lassen, an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer, cruised within 12 nautical miles of the Spratly Islands to challenge China’s territorial claims.

On Saturday, the Chinese military released photographs on its website showing J-11 fighter jets armed with missiles conducting training operations from an airstrip in the South China Sea.

According to an article by Jun Mai, a reporter for the South China Morning Post, the airstrip is located on Woody Island in the Paracels — some 600 kilometers (370 miles) north from the Subi Reef near where the Lassen transited.

The Shenyang J-11 is a twin-engine fighter based on the Soviet-designed Sukhoi Su-27, which NATO designates the Flanker. It can carry a 30mm cannon, rockets, bombs and anti-ship and air-to-air missiles, including the PL-12 missile.

China’s fourth-generation J-10 and J-11 fighter jet aircraft would be roughly equivalent in capability to an upgraded U.S. F-15, according to a U.S. congressional report from last year.

Here are the photographs released by the Chinese military of the so-called training exercise.

Caption: Two J-11 fighters fly above the South China Sea on Oct. 30, 2015. An aviation division under the South China Sea Fleet of the Chinese PLA Navy carried out on Friday training on real air battle tactics. (Chinamil/Fan Huaijiang) Caption: Two J-11 fighters fly above the South China Sea on Oct. 30, 2015. An aviation division under the South China Sea Fleet of the Chinese PLA Navy carried out on Friday training on real air battle tactics. (Chinamil/Fan Huaijiang)

 

Caption: A J-11 fighter taxis on the runway after returning from a flight training on Oct. 30, 2015. An aviation division under the South China Sea Fleet of the Chinese PLA Navy carried out on Friday training on real air battle tactics. (Chinamil/Fan Huaijiang) Caption: A J-11 fighter taxis on the runway after returning from a flight training on Oct. 30, 2015. An aviation division under the South China Sea Fleet of the Chinese PLA Navy carried out on Friday training on real air battle tactics. (Chinamil/Fan Huaijiang)

 

Caption: A J-11 fighter is ready to take-off in a flight training on Oct. 30, 2015. An aviation division under the South China Sea Fleet of the Chinese PLA Navy carried out on Friday training on real air battle tactics. (Chinamil/Fan Huaijiang) Caption: A J-11 fighter is ready to take-off in a flight training on Oct. 30, 2015. An aviation division under the South China Sea Fleet of the Chinese PLA Navy carried out on Friday training on real air battle tactics. (Chinamil/Fan Huaijiang)

Show Full Article

Related Topics

DefenseTech

Most Popular Military News