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Chinese Carrier Completes Training Mission

An undated picture of Chinese carrier Liaoning. Xinhua Photo

An undated picture of Chinese carrier Liaoning. Xinhua Photo

China’s first modern aircraft carrier has returned to port after more than a month at sea on a training mission, Chinese state media reported early Thursday.

Carrier Liaoning “attained the anticipated objectives”, tested combat systems, practiced flight operations and practiced ship formations during the 37-day underway period, according to a vague report in the state-run Xinhua News Agency.

Xinhua published an image of Liaoning underway in formation with a group of PLAN ships.

An undated photo of Chinese Liaoning leading a group of People's Liberation Army Navy ships. Xinhua Photo

An undated photo of Chinese Liaoning leading a group of People’s Liberation Army Navy ships. Xinhua Photo

Though the resolution of the photo was low, the formation appears to be made up of a Yuzhao-class amphibious warship and six destroyers.

The unknown Yuzhao-class ship is believed to be the ship that nearly collided with U.S. Navy guided missile cruiser USS Cowpens (CG-63) — which was shadowing the group in early December.

The incident was called an “irresponsible action,” by U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.

The 55,000-ton Liaoning is a former Ukrainian-built, Soviet-era ship China has been using to learn the basics of operating a carrier ahead of a planned domestic carrier construction program.

Categories: Aviation, Foreign Forces, News & Analysis, Surface Forces, U.S. Navy
Sam LaGrone

About USNI News Editor

Sam LaGrone is the USNI Online Editor at the U.S. Naval Institute.
He was formerly the U.S. Maritime Correspondent for the Washington D.C. bureau of Jane’s Defence Weekly and Jane’s Navy International. In his role he covered legislation, acquisition and operations for the Sea Services and spent time underway with the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and the Canadian Navy.
Sam is a 2003 graduate of Virginia Military Institute.