India-Pakistan Current Affairs - 2019

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China Pakistan: Secure CPEC sea route

In order to secure the CPEC sea route, China and Pakistan have signed a deal to build drones with maximum payload of 480 kg, with top speed of 370 km per hour and can fly up to 20 hours. The drones are called Loong II. These drones are similar to the MQ-9 Reaper drones developed by the US.

Highlights

Pakistan and China have agreed to build 48 drones in the Pakistan soil. The deal is to be implemented by the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex and Aviation Industry Corp of China. This deal is considered to be the biggest drone sale of China to any country. Pakistan is already operating Loong I drone. China has sold Loong I drones to other countries as well. It includes Kazakhstan, Indonesia and United Arav Emirates

Global Concerns

China is building its counter drone systems and laser weapons largely as it tries to catch US on UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) Technology. These technologies focus on spoofing techniques that prevent sending false information to UAVs. Together China and Russia are in arms race with the United States. There are concerns raised by number of countries about the trade war, repeated sanctions, imposition of taxes, space race and arms race between the countries.

India Concerns

CPEC (China Pakistan Economic Corridor), a major part of China’s BRI project passes through the Pakistan Occupied Kashmir region. India is concerned about the countries strengthening security in the region. With series of attacks and tensions between the India and Pakistan namely Pulwama, Balkot strikes, Abrogation of Article 370, etc, India sees the current move as a tension addend.

Meteor missiles: India asks for early delivery from France

India has requested for an early delivery of Meteor air-to-air missiles from France. These missiles will provide India the power to take on US supplied AMRAAM missiles possessed by the Pakistan Air Force.

Highlights

The Meteor missile has a delivery range to take over all the other air forces in the region including China. The missiles were to come by late 2020. However, India is insisting for delivery of at least 10 missiles in advance along with the first set of Rafale fighter jets. The first set of Rafale jets are to arrive in May 2020 after the completion of pilot training in France.

Meteor Missiles

The Meteor missiles are air-to-air missiles with a range of 150 km and no escape zone of 60 km. This no escape zone is the largest in the world according to its manufacturers. These missiles are to be attached to the Rafale jets. With increasing tensions between India and Pakistan, India is requesting for an early delivery.

Operation Chammal

The French Government has invited India to visit the Al Dhafra air base in UAE where the Rafale aircrafts are on active operations. The base is currently executing Operation Chammal.

Operation Chammal is a French Military operation in Syria and Iraq to contain the expansion of Islamic State. The operation also supports Iraq army. The name of the operation comes from the north westerly wind that blows over Persian Gulf and Iraq.