China launched its first aircraft carrier yesterday.
Patriotic morale was flying high when China’s first aircraft carrier embarked for its first sea trials yesterday. Yet one can wonder when the first plane will effectively take off: the Popular Liberation Army has no trained pilot.
To its neighbours, however, the more important question is whether the vessel will be used to defend China’s claims on disputed territories, such as the North China Sea. China says it won’t. Its neighbours are unconvinced - Taiwan recently unveiled its most recent missile, coincidentally baptized the ‘carrier killer’. Domestically it’s not all cheer either, as critics say China should spend more time addressing its political and social issues.
Watch Radio Free Asia's vido of the launch on YouTube