(TibetanReview.net, Jul29’21) – After man-portable anti-tank missile systems, China says it has developed, newly tested and deployed two other of its latest artillery weapons in occupied Tibet with the obvious view to take on India with which it continues to be in a faceoff across the Ladakh border areas. The weapons made their exercise debuts in plateau regions organized by the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Xinjiang Military Command and Tibet Military Command and analysts said Jul 28 that these weapons were particularly effective on plateaus, reported China’s official globaltimes.cn Jul 28.
One of the artillery weapons was stated to be the PLZ-07 122-millimeter-caliber self-propelled howitzer. The report said an artillery unit under a regiment affiliated with the PLA Xinjiang Military Command organized a live-fire exercise with this newly commissioned equipment for the first time in a snowy plateau region at an elevation of more than 5,000 meters.
The report said that with an armored, caterpillar-tracked chassis, the PLZ-07 had much higher survivability and mobility when operating in special terrains, making it potentially China’s most powerful howitzer in its caliber category.
The other newly introduced artillery piece was stated to be a multiple rocket launcher system, which made its debut in a recent exercise with the PLA Tibet Military Command.
While looking similar to the PHL-11 self-propelled multiple rocket launcher system, the new lighter and more agile rocket artillery was stated to only run on four wheels and to have 20 rocket launch tubes, compared to the original’s six wheels and 40 launch tubes.
The report said that in addition to these two new weapons, the PLA had been operating other types of artillery weapons in plateau regions, including howitzers and multiple rocket launcher systems with different calibers and mounted on different chassis, like the PCL-181 155-millimeter caliber self-propelled howitzer and the PHL-03 long-range multiple rocket launcher system.
The reported cited an unnamed expert as saying the PLA could now use optimal weapons in different scenarios, considering when firepower, mobility and armored protection should be prioritized.