Pakistan to soon get upgraded F-16s

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Islamabad, Jan 20 (UNI) Pakistan will soon get the delivery of upgraded F-16s from the US, according to a top foreign office official.

The US has initiated upgradation work on F-16 fighter jets for the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and the Pentagon has placed orders with the US aircraft manufacturers for provision of the latest version of F-16 jets, Foreign Office spokesman Mohammed Sadiq was quoted by The News as saying.

He said the PAF would soon get the delivery of the new aircrafts.

''The planes currently being used by the PAF are being fitted with the latest avionics and other equipment,'' he said.

''This will make them the most modern planes,'' he added.

The spokesman said the relations between Pakistan and the US were not only important from the bilateral point of view but also crucial for the peace and stability in the region.

Referring to statements by some US presidential hopefuls over the security of Pakistan's nuclear assets, Mr Sadiq said ''Some statements by such persons have made it clear that they neither know about the internal situation in Pakistan nor can they imagine what may be consequences of such rhetoric and how such statements demoralise those who are laying their lives in the war on terror.'' He said Islamabad would continue to engage Washington for maintaining the present level of bilateral ties, ''irrespective of who wins the presidential election in the US''.

Mr Sadiq said US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice would meet President Pervez Musharraf on January 23 in Davos and the two sides would discuss proposals for promotion of the bilateral relations.


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