Varyag to begin patrolling this year

The first and still the only aircraft carrier of China, “Shi Lang,” which was remade from the unfinished Ukrainian aircraft carrier “Varyag” will begin patrolling this year, said the deputy commander of China’s Navy, Xu Hongmeng (徐洪猛).

As commander Xu noted, all tests of “Shi Lang” (Varyag) run very smoothly. “We intend to put the carrier into service later this year“.

Local experts said the expected date of the official entry, “Shi Lan” in the system would be August 1, 2012, marking the day of the Armed Forces of China.

“The test flights conducted for the fighters J-15 will be based on the Varyag.” said Xu Hongmeng.

After the official commissioning, the Chinese aircraft carrier will be assigned to a naval base on the Chinese southern island of Hainan. The area of the ship’s responsibility will include the East China Sea and South China sea, where exist unresolved territorial disputes between China and several countries in Southeast Asia.