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Pakistan Tests First Indigenous Armed Drone, Laser Guided Missile
Pakistan has test-fired its first domestic combat drone with “impressive pinpoint accuracy.” Hailed by the country's army chief as a “great national achievement,” the new arsenal is aimed at boosting Pakistan’s ability to fight terrorism.
The drone, dubbed 'Burraq' in honor of the flying horse described in Islamic screeds, is capable of flying in all-weather conditions. Equipped with a Barq laser-guided missile, the drone showed “impressive pinpoint accuracy,” said Pakistan's chief of army staff, General Raheel Sharif. Sharif attended Friday’s ceremony and witnessed the drone successfully hitting both static and moving targets. Speaking at the event, General Sharif said the newly developed weapon will increase the military’s capacity to effectively combat terrorism. He also commended the scientists and engineers who worked on the project.
“Let’s join hands to take Pakistan forward in respective fields,” Sharif said in his address.
Islamabad has in the past complained about US drone strikes targeting Al-Qaeda and Taliban insurgents near the country’s northwestern border with Afghanistan, saying that such military activity violates Pakistan’s territorial integrity. The CIA has carried out more than 400 strikes in Pakistan since 2004, according to the independent Bureau of Investigative Journalism.
Pakistan’s military developed surveillance-capable drones back in November 2013, but arming them required overcoming significant technical hurdles.