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Islamabad, A high level delegation, led by Lieutenant General (Pilot) Salem Hamad Eqail Al-Nabet, Chief of Staff, Qatar Armed Forces, called on Air Chief Marshal Zaheer Ahmed Baber Sidhu, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force at Air Headquarters, Islamabad today.

During the meeting, evolving regional security and geo-strategic environment, avenues of defence cooperation in the field of technology sharing and development alongside key areas of mutual interest were discussed.

On his arrival, a smartly turned out contingent of Pakistan Air Force presented him guard of honour following which he was introduced to the Principal Staff Officers of Pakistan Air Force.

Later, the visiting dignitary called on Air Chief Marshal Zaheer Ahmed Baber Sidhu, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force in his office. During the meeting, Chief of the Air Staff shared broad contours of his vision concerning PAF’s modernization drive to further augment current operational capability necessitated in contemporary hybrid warfare especially in Artificial Intelligence, Niche technologies, Cyber and Space domains. He also discussed about various ongoing projects of Pakistan Air Force’s operational construct, force goals and plans for the force structure with a keen focus on future warfare. Appreciating the participation of Qatar Air Force contingent in Exercise Indus Shield at an operational air base of PAF, the Air Chief highlighted that both the countries enjoy historic and unprecedented brotherly relations and reiterated his resolve to further enhance the existing bilateral ties in military to military cooperation and training domains.

The Chief of Staff, Qatar Armed Forces, praised the professionalism of Pakistan Air Force personnel and the exceptional progress made by PAF over the years, especially through indigenization. He also appreciated the dynamic efforts of Air Chief Marshal Zaheer Ahmed Baber Sidhu in steering PAF towards modernization. Both sides concurred to further optimize the existing military ties between the two countries, with a specific focus on advanced tactical training, emerging technologies and strengthening operational competencies especially in the spheres of electronic warfare and cyber technology. The dignitaries also discussed the potential for joint military exercises and exchange programs with an aim to facilitate the exchange of expertise, enhancing interoperability and fostering closer ties between Air Forces of both the brotherly countries. The Chief of Staff, Qatar Armed Forces also visited different installations and technological infrastructure established at Air Headquarters, Islamabad, including PAF’s National ISR and Integrated Air Operations Centre (NIIAOC) and PAF’s Cyber Command.

Later, the President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Dr Arif Alvi, conferred Nishan-i-Imtiaz (Military), which is the highest Non-Operational Military Award, upon Lieutenant General (Pilot) Salem Hamad Eqail Al-Nabet at a momentous ceremony held at Aiwan-e-Sadar, Islamabad. The recognition applauds the unparalleled commitment of the Chief of Staff, Qatar Armed Forces to strengthening bilateral military ties and his dynamic role in advancing relations between Pakistan and Qatar.

The meeting between Chief of the Air Staff, PAF and Chief of Staff, Qatar Armed Forces, serves as a testament to the commitment between the Armed Forces of both the countries in working together to address common challenges and the willingness to further strengthen their bilateral ties in the realms of defence and military cooperation.