First of 18 F-16D combat aircraft for Pakistan rolls out

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Dallas (Texas, US), Oct.14 (ANI): The first of the 18 F-16D fighter jets for the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) rolled out from the Lockheed Martin's aeronautic (LM Aero) facility at Fort Worth here.

Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force, Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar Suleman was present at the unveiling ceremony along with CENTCOM chief General David Petraeus, Chief of Staff US Air Force General Norton Schwartz, Pakistan's Ambassador to the US Hussain Haqqani and several other top officials.

Speaking on the occasion, Air Chief Marshal Suleman said the state-of-the-art F-16s will bolster PAF's fleet and will 'enable it to undertake a wide variety of missions across the entire spectrum of operations.'

Following the trials and integration of new systems, the first batch of F-16-C's would reach Pakistan in June 2010. All the 18 aircrafts are scheduled to arrive in Pakistan by December 2010, The Nation reports

It may be noted that Pakistan had inked a deal with the then US government in 2006 to acquire 18 Block-52 F-16 C/D combat aircrafts. (ANI)

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