Pakistan-China co-produced JF-17 Thunder jets to escort Chinese Premier Li Keqiang’s plane

Eurasia News

Islamabad: Six JF-17 Thunder jets of the Pakistan Air Force will escort Chinese Premier Li Keqiang’s aircraft when it enters Pakistani airspace on Wednesday at the start of his two-day visit, symbolising the close links between the two sides in defence and strategic sectors. The Dispatch News Network (DND) reported.

The JF-17s, developed and built jointly by China and Pakistan, will guide the special Air China Boeing 747 aircraft to Nur Khan airbase, where a 21-gun salute will mark Mr Li’s arrival, officials said.  The JF-17s will fly past the airbase as Mr Li will be received by President Asif Ali Zardari and caretaker Prime Minister Mir Hazar Khan Khoso, they said.

This is Mr Li’s first visit to Pakistan since assuming office in March and a “warm welcome awaits him”, said a statement from the Foreign Office. The visit will focus on “broadening the horizons of multi-faceted ties” between the two countries. Mr Li’s visit is taking place at a time when Pakistan has elected new national and provincial assemblies and the PML-N party is set to form the new government.