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F-16s will add to

March 29, 2005

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KARACHI, March 28: President General Pervez Musharraf said on Monday that P-3C Orion planes, F-22P frigates and F-16 fighter aircraft would add to the offensive punch of Pakistans defence. These state-of-the-art platforms would augment our defence capabilities and play a pivotal role in any future scenario, he remarked.

The president was speaking at a briefing session on Pakistan Navys Shamsheer-i-Bahr-II war-game at the PNS Jauhar.

He appreciated close coordination among the three services during the exercises and said that the lessons learnt from them would be of practical value and go a long way in validating Pakistan Navys operational plans and doctrines.

The economy and defence are the two pillars on which the very existence and prosperity of a nation rests. It is heartening to note that we have cemented both the pillars, he said.

He congratulated the three services for a very well-conducted exercise. He said that the lessons learnt and the recommendations made are very viable and would be given due consideration by the government.

In his welcome address, Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Shahid Karimullah said the war-game, conducted bi-annually, is an extension of joint services-level exercise Sabit Qadam-II. The exercise enabled Pakistan Navy to dwell upon its concepts and war plans. He said that the exercise was conducted this year on a wider canvas with greater participation from sister services.

The officer conducting the exercise, Rear Admiral Iftikhar Ahmad, said it is a series of conceptual tri-services war game to assess the maritime threat and to evolve strategy consonant with the prevailing geo-political situation.APP