China is in the process of supplying four armed drones to Pakistan, ostensibly to protect the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and the People’s Liberation Army Navy’s new base at Gwadar port, according to people familiar with the development said on Sunday.Gwadar, in the highly restive southwestern province of Baluchistan, is described as the crown jewel of China’s $60 billion investment in Belt and Road Initiative projects in Pakistan.The supply of two systems (each has two drones and a ground station) comes ahead of Beijing’s plan to jointly produce 48 GJ-2 drones, the military version of Wing Loong II, designed in China for use by Pakistan’s air force. Also Watch | India-China border: IAF uses attack choppers, fighter jets for surveillanceChina has already been selling the reconnaissance and strike drone Wing Loong II to several countries in Asia and West Asia and emerged as the largest exporter of armed drones. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) arms transfer database, China had delivered 163 UAVs to a dozen-odd countries including Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Algeria, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates from 2008 to 2018.Unlike the US that follows an elaborate process to determine and regulate the end-use of… Read full this story
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