Beijing, May 25 (AP) Chinese navy pilots aboard the country’s sole operating aircraft carrier have completed their first nighttime takeoffs and landings. Also Read - Chinese Blogger Detained Over Posts on Casualties in Galwan Clash: Report

The missions were being hailed by state media today as a major step forward in the combat ability of the Liaoning, which was bought as a mostly empty hull from Ukraine and commissioned in 2012 along with its flight wing. Also Read - China Rejects 'Genocide' Attack From UN on Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang

In footage released late yesterday, J-15 fighter jets were shown taking off and landing in the darkness, their afterburners glowing. Nighttime missions are considered far more difficult and dangerous than those in the daytime. Also Read - Ladakh Standoff: What India, China Discussed During 16-Hour Long Military-Level Talks | Read Here

China’s said this month its second carrier, the first built entirely in China, had completed five days of sea trials. The ships are seen as backing up Beijing’s claims to Taiwan and the South China Sea. (AP) HMB HMB

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.