China says stealth technology is domestic
|25 January 2011 | 11:21 | Source: Beta|
|BEIJING -- China has rejected claims that its new stealth fighter jet was built using U.S. technology, recovered from a plane downed over Serbia a decade ago.|
Reports in the foreign media suggested that China used reverse engineering after the country's experts allegedly studied parts of a U.S. Air Force F-117, shot down over Serbia in March of 1999.
An unnamed Chinese official denied the allegations in a statement carried by the Global Times, saying that "this is not the first time that the foreign media are trying to sully the newly-established Chinese military technologies".
The official also said it was "meaningless to respond to such accusations".
China debuted its stealth jet this month, and the presentation coincided with the visit to Beijing of U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates.
Although the western media have reported the plane was "most likely" based on the technology obtained from the wreckage recovered in Serbia, they did not explain how China might have had a chance to examine it.
The American bomber, that was touted as having "invisible" radar footprint, was shot down near Buđanovci in western Serbia as NATO was conducting its aerial war against the country.
According to these reports, "Chinese agents were looking for the remnants of the F-117 and it is possible that they received intelligence data from Serbs, their allies".
Western diplomats are further quoted as saying that China "had an intelligence department in its embassy in Belgrade" during the war.
The embassy was attacked and hit by five NATO missiles in May 1999, when three people were killed.
The western military alliance maintained that the attack was the result of a mistake.