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Updated October 25th, 2023 at 15:38 IST

US sanctions on Chinese firms amidst Pakistan's Ghauri ballistic missile testing

Pakistan recently conducted a successful test of the Ghauri Weapon System, following the flight test of the Ababeel Weapon System.

Yuvraj Tyagi
Nasr Missile Pakistan
Nasr is another Pakistani surface-to-surface ballistic missile. | Image:DG ISPR
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Pakistan recently carried out a successful test of the Ghauri Weapon System. Achieving the milestone on Tuesday, the test comes shortly after the flight test of the ballistic missile Ababeel Weapon System, demonstrating Islamabad’s bid to enhance its strategic capabilities. The primary objective of this training launch was to evaluate the operational and technical readiness of the Army Strategic Forces Command (ASFC). 

The launch was carried out under the supervision of Commander ASFC, with the presence of senior officers from the strategic forces, as well as scientists and engineers from the strategic organization. Commander ASFC expressed his appreciation for the remarkable contributions made by the scientists and engineers involved in strengthening Pakistan's strategic capability. Their dedication and expertise play a pivotal role in advancing the country's defence capabilities.  

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Sanctions loom amidst collaboration  

It's noteworthy that this training launch took place just days after the United States imposed sanctions on three Chinese companies for supplying missile-related components to Pakistan's ballistic missile program. China, a steadfast ally of Pakistan, has remained a significant supplier of arms and defence equipment, contributing to Islamabad's military modernization efforts.  

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Following the successful launch, Pakistan's top leadership, including President Arif Alvi, Interim Prime Minister Anwaar ul Haq Kakar, and Services Chiefs, extended their congratulations to the participating troops, scientists, and engineers. This achievement further underscores Pakistan's commitment to bolstering its national defence.  

Advancing Pakistan's missile arsenal  

This training launch adds to Pakistan's growing inventory of missile systems. The Ghauri Weapon System has been a crucial component of Pakistan's deterrence strategy. In addition, the recent flight test of the Ababeel Weapon System, conducted on October 18, aimed to re-validate various design parameters and technical aspects, enhancing the country's missile capabilities.  

Pakistan possesses a range of missiles, both ballistic and cruise, as part of its military arsenal. Here are the top three missiles in Pakistan's inventory. The Shaheen series of ballistic missiles represents a significant part of Pakistan's strategic deterrence capabilities. This series includes various variants such as Shaheen-I, Shaheen-II, and Shaheen-III. These medium-range ballistic missiles have different ranges, with Shaheen-III being the longest-ranged in the series, capable of reaching targets at over 2,750 kilometres. The Shaheen missiles are essential components of Pakistan's nuclear deterrence strategy.  

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Secondly, Babur is Pakistan's indigenously developed land-attack cruise missile. It is designed to be launched from multiple platforms, including ground-based launchers and naval vessels. The missile is known for its stealth capabilities, which make it difficult to detect by radar systems. Babur has a range of approximately 700 kilometres and is equipped with both conventional and nuclear warheads. Its precision and ability to fly at low altitudes make it a versatile weapon in Pakistan's military inventory.  

Meanwhile, Ghaznavi is a short-range ballistic missile that provides Pakistan with a quick and effective means of delivering a nuclear or conventional payload to nearby targets. It has a range of around 290 kilometres and is known for its reliability and accuracy. The Ghaznavi missile system is crucial for Pakistan's short-range tactical deterrence. Pakistan's commitment to maintaining a credible deterrence program remains a significant aspect of its national defence strategy. These recent tests reinforce the nation's efforts to secure its sovereignty and maintain regional stability. 

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Published October 25th, 2023 at 15:38 IST

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