Source: The Times of India | Tuesday, January 1, 2002

China Cautions Israel Against Selling
AWACS to India

BEIJING: In a veiled attack on Israel, China on Thursday cautioned countries against doing anything that would endanger peace and stability in South Asia in the wake of reports that Israel was planning to sell advanced Phalcon Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) to India.

"We hope that the various countries will make their efforts to preserve stability and peace in South Asia," Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue told reporters here when asked to comment on reports that Israel may sell the Phalcon AWACS system to India.

"There are some press reports that Israel wishes to sell the early warning system to some other countries. We have taken notice of that," Zhang said.

The Phalcon radar, developed jointly [Bullshit!] by the US and Israel, can simultaneously track up to 60 targets over 800 km radius to support defensive and offensive operations.

China's relations with Israel is reportedly under strain after the latter cancelled a firm order to sell Phalcon radar to the communist giant under strong US pressure in June 2000.

The US had expressed deep concern over the possible sale [They already have it] of Phalcon to China which would have given Beijing a decisive military edge over Taiwanese and US fighters in any conflict over the Taiwan issue.

Commenting on Sino-Israeli negotiations on a compensation amount, Zhang said the talks are still continuing.

As for the questions between China and Israel, the two sides are still holding consultations with each other. We hope that the Israeli side will make positive efforts for the improvement of bilateral ties, Zhang said.

China is reportedly demanding that Israel either uphold its contract or, according to unconfirmed figures published in an Israeli newspaper, pay China $1.26 billion as compensation.

This figure includes $232 million paid as advance for the first plane, one billion dollars as compensation and $28 million as interest on the advance payment.

However, Zhang did not comment on the compensation figure of $1.26 billion.

( PTI )