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Interview

China tests missile targeting for specific planes: CNAS' Shugart

Mock-ups in Xinjiang may be a message to Japan over Senkaku Islands

A graduate of the U.S. Naval War College, Tom Shugart served for more than 25 years in the U.S. Navy as a submarine officer. He has been in his current position since 2020. (Photo courtesy of CNAS).

TOKYO -- China has set up what appears to be a mock-up of an airborne warning and control system (AWACS) plane used by the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) in a desert area of Xinjiang, Nikkei has determined, based on expert analysis of satellite photographs. The object is possibly a dummy target used for training to attack SDF aircraft with missiles.

Tom Shugart, an adjunct senior fellow at the Washington-based Center for a New American Security (CNAS) pointed out in an interview with Nikkei Asia that the object appears to be a model of the JASDF's E-767 aircraft.

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