CNS Liaoning (16) is the first Chinese Type 001 aircraft carrier commissioned into the People's Liberation Army Navy Surface Force, It was originally classified as a training ship, intended to allow the Navy to experiment, train and gain familiarity with aircraft carrier operations. Following upgrades and additional training in late 2018, Chinese state media announced that the ship would shift to a combat role in 2019.
Originally laid down in 1985 for the Soviet Navy as the Kuznetsov class aircraft carrier Riga, she was launched on 4 December 1988 and renamed Varyag in 1990. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, construction was halted and the ship was put up for sale by Ukraine. The stripped hulk was purchased in 1998 and towed to the Dalian naval shipyard in northeast China.
The ship was rebuilt and commissioned into the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) as Liaoning on 25 September 2012. Its Chinese ship class designation is Type 001. In November 2016, the political commissar of Liaoning, Commodore Li Dongyou, stated that Liaoning was combat ready.
- ↑ https://chinapower.csis.org/aircraft-carrier/
- ↑ Beijing says Liaoning is now a ‘combat carrier’ (en-US) (2019-04-25).
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 How does China's first aircraft carrier stack up?. CSIS China Power (9 December 2015).