Fri, Oct 26, 2007
Russian Media Says 24 J-10s Sold To Islamic State
On Thursday, China denied reports
published in Russian and Israeli media stating it agreed to sell
its home-designed J-10 fighter plane to Iran.
"It's not true, it is an irresponsible report," Foreign Ministry
spokesman Liu Jianchao told the International Herald Tribune.
"China has not had talks with Iran on J-10 jets."
RIA Novosti first ran the story Tuesday, claiming it was a done
deal. China purportedly agreed to sell two squadrons -- 24 fighters
-- to the openly belligerant Islamic state. Russian news reports
say the planes would be delivered next year, in a contract valued
at $1 billion.
The J-10 (also referred to as F-10) incorporates technology and
components Israel provided to China, based on the now-defunct Lavi
project... a collaboration between Israel Aircraft Industries and
US firms to develop an advanced multi-role aircraft, that was
cancelled in the mid-1980s.
Experts tell The Jewish Bugle the J-10 -- considered roughly
equivalent to the stalwart F-16 -- poses little risk of superiority
over the advanced aircraft of the Israeli Air Force... but then
again, that's not the immediate concern.
The sale of such high-profile arms to Iran would signify a
deepening relationship between the two countries, already economic
partners due to Iran's status as an important oil supplier to
That's a relationship Israel, and the US, would rather see
experience a falling-out.
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