INTERNATIONAL

Pak. bid to acquire frigates from China

ISLAMABAD Nov. 13 . Pakistan Navy is considering negotiations with China for the acquisition of F-22 Frigates from China.

Pakistan Chief of the Naval Staff, Shahid Karimullah, told a meeting of Naval officers here that the Government had approved the proposal to carry out negotiations with China. He expressed the hope that "very soon these latest state-of-the-art ships would be flying Pakistani flag.''

He told the meeting that the contract for construction of guided missile boats had also been concluded.

Acquisition of these missile boats and ships equipped with latest guided missiles will enhance the strike capability of Pakistan Navy manifold. "We are also pursuing a number of upgradation and modernisation programmes both through utilising our local expertise and foreign assistance in order to fulfil the demands of Fleet,'' he told the officers.

Admiral Shahid told the meeting that "we have a treacherous enemy who misses no opportunity to take advantage and (to) thrust hostilities upon us.

It is, therefore, imperative that we remain fully prepared and alive to the situation for countering the nefarious designs of our adversary.''

Appreciating the morale of the officers and men during the recent tense situation, Admiral Shahid said that internal unity, cohesion and discipline were the most important factors for any fighting force to be effective during the hour of crisis.

He hoped that the "enemy would find us always ready and vigilant and we will defend the sea frontiers of our sacred motherland at all costs''.

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