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EXCLUSIVE: China builds 3 airbases, deploys warplanes and drones near Indian border regions

China has built Bangda Airbase-- nearly 150km away from Arunachal Pradesh's border and deployed WZ-7 'Soaring Dragon' drones.

Ajeet Kumar Written By: Ajeet Kumar @Ajeet1994 New Delhi Updated on: December 20, 2022 11:57 IST
China is building airbases near the Indian border
Image Source : INDIA TV China is building airbases near the Indian border

India-China border row: Amid a recent clash between Chinese and Indian soldiers near the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Tawang region, new satellite images revealed Beijing has stepped up its military activities and built airbases near Tibetan regions. According to the satellite images accessed by IndiaTV, it shows China has positioned a large number of fighter aircraft and high-resolution as well as long-range drones near the border regions.   

The major revelation came nearly a week after media reports revealed that the Indian Air Force had activated its combat aircraft at least twice this month after detecting Chinese aircraft that threatened to breach Indian airspace over Arunachal. Subsequently, the Indian Air Force also increased air patrols over the skies of Arunachal Pradesh in order to alter any Chinese aircraft entering the Indian border regions.  

China deploys combat weapons near the Indian borders

The images released by Maxar show China has built Bangda Airbase-- nearly 150km away from Arunachal Pradesh's border and deployed WZ-7 'Soaring Dragon' drones. This is the same drone which China unveiled last year and was termed "state-of-the-art" citing some advanced combat features. The most advanced intelligence drone can fly non-stop for up to 10 hours and is capable of sending high-resolution images to cruise missiles which eventually assist it in targeting enemies on the ground.  

Moreover, satellite images of December 14 also revealed that the Chinese Air Force deployed two Flanker-type fighter jets at Bangda Airbase. The jets are similar to Su-30MKI fighters used by the Indian Air Force. The Chinese side has also deployed Shaanxi KJ-500-- a third-generation airborne early warning and control aircraft used by the Chinese People's Liberation Army Air Force, and Chengdu J-10 (Vigorous Dragon)-- a medium-weight, single-engine, multirole combat aircraft capable of all-weather operation.

China builds three airbases near the Indian border

Furthermore, the new images disclosed how the Chinese government has been preparing for any critical situations by developing three air bases-- Bangda, Shigatse and Lhasa-- which lie near the border regions. These airbases are located nearly 200 km from the Indian boundary. Lhasa, which is nearly 150 km from the Indian border, is also constructing a second runway parallel to the earlier one. 

India-China clash

It is worth mentioning China has been actively developing infrastructures near the border regions ever since its soldiers clashed with Indian troops in Galwan valley in 2020. Recently, soldiers of both countries again clashed in the Tawang region wherein the defence minister said the army had given a tough reply to the enemies. The Defence Minister assured the country that "our forces are committed to protecting our territorial integrity and will continue to thwart any attempt made to alter the status quo".

India also starts developing infrastructures near Arunachal Pradesh

Moreover, the Indian government has also been carrying out infrastructure development "aggressively" on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in order to counter the Chinese aggression in the border regions of Arunachal Pradesh. The Union government has assigned the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) to develop and maintain all road networks in the key border areas of western Assam and western Arunachal Pradesh. Moreover, India is also developing communication channels in order to enhance connectivity near the border region. Several mobile towers have been installed in Tawang, where the Indian and Chinese troops had confronted each other in a violent clash.

Also Read: Indian govt 'aggressively' developing infrastructures near LAC to counter Chinese aggression

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