Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Pak looks beyond F-22P frigates: Admiral Noman

Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Noman Bashir has said that the induction of F-22P frigate in Pakistan Navy was a very big leap forward not only in respect of Pak-China bilateral co-operation but it also help enhance country’s defence capability, adding “we are looking beyond F-22P frigates”. The Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) currently on official visit to China, said here he had very useful discussions at leadership level and looking forward for commissioning of the first F-22P frigate named ‘PNS Zulfiqar’ on July 30 which was constructed in Shanghai. “Because of extremely cordial relations between the two countries as well as among the two navies, it was very important for me to meet our most trusted friends and as soon as I got the first opportunity I embarked on visit to China”, he added. Talking to Chinese media, Admiral Noman said that one of the important aspects of his visit was the interactions and discussions on how to further they can make progress and strengthen the relationship at all levels. To a question, he said Pakistan, China relations are multidimensional and both countries have understanding on many issues. Both countries are cooperating in various civil as well as defence projects.

About India Nuke submarine, Admiral Noman said that although it was launched two days back, we knew it for a long time. Indian, he said has their own security perspective, but Pakistan believs that the presence of Indian nuclear submarine changes the security calculus of Indian ocean. Pakistan, Admiral Noman said do not want to follow arms race as “we have our own priorities”. He said that we are fully alive to our security and taking all necessary measures to safeguard it. In this regard he referred to acquisition of F-22P frigates for Pakistan Navy. Admiral Noman Bashir pointed out that Chinese military production industry maintains very high quality and standard and Pakistan wants to benefit from their achievements. To a question on security of Indian Ocean, Admiral Noman said that it is very important for many reasons. The Ocean is main arty for oil supplies and it connect East with the West as a result a large number of cargo ships passed through it every day.

“The Ocean is very important not only for Pakistan and China but for the entire world therefore Pakistan don’t want to see it monopolize by any country. So, this is important for all the countries in the world including Pakistan which is located on the mouth of Gulf to make sure that the India Ocean remains peaceful”, he added. Pakistan Navy, Admiral Noman Bashir said was contributing its role with the international community in fight against illegal activities including drug and human trafficking through sea. Welcoming the presence of Chinese Task-force in Indian Ocean, the CNS said we look forward for opportunities to work together for the common objective of maintaining peace and security. Meanwhile Admiral Noman Bashir said that Pakistan Navy is still actively participating along with Navies of various countries including China in curbing piracy in sea of Aden. “Our performance was highly acclaimed by major countries”, he added. Pakistan’s Ambassador to China Masood Khan was also present on the occasion.


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