|Staff Reporter |||Mar 21, 2017 09:14 AM EDT|
(Photo : Pakistan Navy) Test launch of a Zarb missile in 2016.
The Pakistan Navy announced another successful test of its Zarb land-based anti-ship guided cruise missile derived from China's C-802 anti-ship missile (AShM).
The test launch took place from an undisclosed coastal location, and saw the Zarb missile successfully strike a moored target out to sea. It's the second known test launch of a Zarb since April 2016.
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Admiral Muhammad Zakaullah, Chief of Naval Staff of the Pakistan Navy, said the Zarb weapon system "has added a new dimension in the operational reach of the Pakistan Navy."
He noted Zarb will be capable of further supporting the seaward defense of Pakistan by "having the capability of launching long-range anti-ship missiles from land."
The navy claims Zarb is equipped with advanced technology and avionics, allowing it to hit sea-based targets with a high degree of accuracy.
Vice Admiral Khan Hasham bin Saddique, Vice Chief of Naval Staff, commended the Pakistan Navy and the crew members and other officials involved in the trial following the successful launch.
Zarb is likely derived from the C-802, the upgraded export version of the Chinese YJ-8 AShM. The Pakistan Navy operates some 70 C-802s. The weapon is the main missile armament aboard the navy's F-22P Zulfiquar class frigates and Jalalat II class fast attack craft.
The C-802 carries a 165 kg time-delayed semi-armor-piercing, high-explosive warhead out to some 200 km at a speed of Mach 0.9 (1,100 km/h).
The coastal site test in April 2016 occurred in the Arabian Sea and the AShM successfully engaged a surface target. The navy said the test further consolidates Pakistan's capability for seaward defense and contributes towards peace and stability in the region.
Admiral Zakaullah said the operational use of Zarbh was part of the Pakistan Navy's continuous efforts to augment its capabilities. He described the event as a hallmark of the navy's combat preparedness.
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