China unveiled the latest addition to its People’s Liberation Army Air Force on Tuesday at an airshow in the southern city of Zhuhai.
The radar-evading J-20, previously seen only by bloggers, conducted a flypast over Airshow China, the country’s biggest meeting of aircraft makers and buyers.
The controversial stealth fighter jet is thought to be based on blueprints for the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II, stolen by Chinese hackers in a cyber-spying operation conducted seven years ago.
In July this year, 51-year-old Chinese national Su Bin was sentenced to prison for hacking US defence contractors to steal trade secrets on Beijing’s behalf. He admitted to conspiring with PLA officers to acquire plans for the F-35 and other US military aircraft.
China, hoping that the new jet will narrow the military gap with Washington, has continually denied the hacking allegations.
[Images via Epoch Times, Wikimedia]