In 2015 the Myanmar government ordered 16 JF-17 fighter jets worth 35 million dollars each from Pakistan at a total price of more than half a billion US dollars in a bid to expand its defence capabilities. The JF-17 was co-developed by the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) and China’s Chengdu Aerospace Corporation.
The contract between the PAC and Myanmar was signed at the Paris Air Show in June 2015 where the PAC confirmed that the first jets were to be delivered to Myanmar and go into service in the country’s air force starting from 2017.
According to PAC chairman Air Marshal Javaid Ahmed, the first sale of Pakistan-made jets to a foreign nation has been a “milestone in the country’s aviation history.”
According to military expert Anthony Davis, the JF-17 is a relatively inexpensive option that can operate in air-to-air conflict but also has ground-attack capabilities to deliver dumb bombs and precision-guided munitions.
“In the latter role, it is far more likely to be used in action against ethnic armed groups inside Burma than against foreign invaders,” said Davis.
The Thailand-based Kachin National Organization (KNO) urged the Pakistan government on June 8 not to sell military equipment including JF-17 fighter jets to the Myanmar military.
KNO Chairman Duwa Bawm Wam Layaw said that the Myanmar military was attacking ethnic armed organisations by using modern jets and ordinary people were suffering because of ongoing military offensives.
“The KNO requested Pakistan’s government not to sell military jets to Myanmar as it will escalate the war against ethnic armies,” he said.
He further said that the Myanmar military was bombing civilian targets and had a plan to launch offensives against ethnic armies and was reinforcing their forces.
However the extent of the treacherous actions of the Pakistani government and military do not stop there. The Burmese Army is now in “advanced negotiations” with Pakistan to license-build third-generation JF-17 fighter jets. The Burmese army not satisfied in importing the fighter jets from Pakistan are now seeking license to build them themselves, according to an article in IHS Jane’s military review which cited military sources from the defense industry and Burma Air Force in Rangoon.
The Burma Army-controlled Defense Ministry asked for nearly 2.9 trillion kyats (US$2.1 billion)—14 percent of the government’s 21 trillion kyats ($15.4 billion) annual budget—for the 2017-18 fiscal year.
The large budget is unsurprising, Davis said, “given the Tatmadaw’s perception of itself as the ultimate and best arbiter of what is good for the country, its escalating campaigns against ethnic minority insurgents, and its ambitious modernization plans.”
What can be said about such actions from a Muslim country boasting one of the most powerful armies in the Muslim world. Instead of helping the Rohingya in Burma facing unspeakable genocide and oppression, they instead help and facilitate their oppressors.
The Pakistan military’s actions in this case are an example of intolerable and unfathomable betrayal of some of the most oppressed Muslims today.
May Allah grant the Ummah relief and victory soon through a dynamic and firm leadership far removed from the despotism, wahn and corruption of the current world order and what it is has created of “Muslim nation states” whose lows only seem to get worse.