A group of highly-skilled Eurofighter Typhoon pilots are currently in China, providing training to Chinese pilots. The pilots are German citizens and former members of the German Air Force, with knowledge of NATO secrets, ZDF reports.
According to a German media investigation, two of these pilots, Peter S. and Alexander H., along with Tornado pilot Dirk J., are playing the role of instructors.
The connection between a Chinese spy and a Chinese company
These three German pilots have been found to have contacts and business relationships with Su Bin, a Chinese spy convicted of espionage in the United States in 2016 and later extradited to China.
In addition, they have an agreement as “Aviation Consultant Contractors” with the Chinese company Lode Technology Ltd., whose main shareholder is Su Bin.
Location in China and a nearby airbase
An investigation reveals that one of the German pilots, Alexander H., is in the city of Quiqihar in northeast China.
This area is known for hosting an airbase of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Air Force, where a squadron of J-20 fighters, a fifth-generation stealth aircraft, is located. There are also Shenyang J-11 fighters, known as Flanker-L.
History of non-Chinese pilots hired by China
It is not the first time Chinese companies have hired foreign pilots to advise and train Chinese pilots, revealing Western air tactics.
In previous years, the recruitment of British pilots, also former Eurofighter pilots, as well as Australian pilots was reported. According to Reuters, at least 30 British and Australian pilots are currently in China for similar purposes.
Chinese air concerns and exercises
The revelation that German pilots are training Chinese pilots raises concerns, especially in connection with the latest air exercise conducted by the Chinese Air Force, which simulated the takeover of Taiwan by air.
This highlights the strategic importance of such a formation and its implications for the balance of power in the region.