India Launches Homegrown Aircraft Carrier

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from The Wall Street Journal,

INS Vikrant to Carry Russian-Made MiG-29 Fighters.

India launched its first homegrown aircraft carrier on Monday, part of a campaign to strengthen its naval presence in regional waters and counter an increasingly assertive China.

The INS Vikrant, whose name means “courageous” in Hindi, was built by the state-owned Cochin Shipyard in southern India. It will carry Russian-made MiG-29 fighters and join a U.K.-built carrier already in the Indian fleet.

Amid an Asia-wide arms race prompted by rising Chinese military spending, India has been modernizing its armed forces, turning out new submarines and other warships and investing in other weapons systems.

India said the Vikrant will be combat ready in 2018.

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