China, Russia conduct joint air patrol over Sea of Japan
22 November 2021
by Jon Grevatt
China has flown two H-6K strategic bombers (pictured at Airshow China 2018) in a joint patrol with Russian Tu-95 aircraft over the Sea of Japan and the East China Sea. (Janes/Kelvin Wong)
Chinese and Russian air forces held a joint aerial patrol over the Sea of Japan and the East China Sea on 19 November, the Chinese Ministry of National Defense (MND) has said. The patrol was the third joint Sino-Russian military exercise in 2021, underscoring growing bilateral military ties.
According to the MND, the air patrols featured two Xian Aircraft Company H-6K strategic bombers from the People's Liberation Army Air Force and two Russian Air Force Tupolev Tu-95 ‘Bear' bombers.
It said the aircraft abided by international protocols and did not enter the airspace of other countries.
Despite this, Japan and South Korea expressed concern about the patrol.
Japan's Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi said Tokyo had lodged a protest with Beijing and Moscow. “We informed Russia and China via diplomatic channels about our concerns about similar actions from the viewpoint of the regional security,” he said.
Taiwan initiates mass production of Sky Sword II air-defence system
27 November 2023
by Kapil Kajal
A mock-up of the Sky Sword II missile – locally known as the TC-2 land-based missile – is pictured at TADTE 2023. The missile structure consists of the active radar seeker, followed by the electronics section, proximity fuze, warhead, and rocket motor, ending in the exhaust. (Janes/Kapil Kajal)
Taiwan's state-owned National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology (NCSIST) has started the mass production of its land-based short-to-medium-range air-defence capability known as the Sky Sword II (locally termed Tien Chien II), a Republic of China Army (RoCA) officer told Janes on 27 November.
The mass production has begun in order to meet the RoCA requirement for six Sky Sword II systems, the officer said.
A Sky Sword II system comprises one CS/MYS-951 Battle Management Center (BMC), one CS/MPQ-951 radar unit (RU), and four to five missile firing units (MFUs), the officer added.
The MFU can carry up to four Sky Sword II missiles, and the RoCA procurement of six Sky Sword II systems comprises six BMCs, six RUs, 29 MFUs, and 246 missiles, according to the officer.
Taiwan Army orders additional Kestrel anti-tank weapon systems
08 November 2023
by Kapil Kajal
The Kestrel rockets are free-flight and fin-stabilised. In the above picture, a Kestrel rocket launcher is shown with the HEAT (on the left) and HESH (on the right) munitions. (Janes/Patrick Allen)
Taiwan's Republic of China Army (RoCA) has ordered an additional 5,962 Kestrel individual shoulder-launched anti-tank weapon systems (ATWSs) from state-owned National Chung‐Shan Institute of Science and Technology (NCSIST), a RoCA officer told Janes on 7 November.
The new order of 5,962 brings the total number of Kestrels to be procured to 10,962, including 5,000 Kestrels ordered in late 2022, the officer said.
The systems will be delivered by November 2025, the officer added.
According to the officer, each Kestrel system costs around USD3,000 and the systems are intended to replace ageing 66 mm M72 (Type 1) light anti‐tank weapon systems in-service with the RoCA.
The system is “similar to [the] FGM-148 Javelin ATWS but it doesn't have a fire control subsystem, which makes it much lighter”, the officer said.
The RoCA has ordered Kestrel to train the troops on such systems, the officer added. “Kestrel lacks a target tracking mechanism, therefore, troops need to undergo extensive training to manually track targets.”
Claire Chu, Janes senior China analyst joins Harry Kemsley and Sean Corbett to discuss how China's economic activity projects influence globally and what she learnt as part of the recent US Congressional staff delegation to China.