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China’s first aircraft carrier, built with the hull of an unfinished Soviet-era ship, was handed over to the navy and formally commissioned this morning, the defense ministry said.
The 65,000-ton vessel, named the Liaoning, enters operation after months of sea trials amid a dispute with Japan over islands claimed by both sides.
The carrier will enhance China’s warfighting and defense capabilities and “promote international peace and common development,” China’s Defense Ministry said in a statement on its website today. China has the world’s second-largest defense budget after the U.S. ...