SEOUL, Oct. 18 (Korea Bizwire) — South Korean fighter jets will perform aerial demonstrations together with American fighters this week during a ceremony to mark the 70th anniversary of the Air Force, officials said Friday.
The ceremony will take place on Saturday at Seoul Airport in Seongnam, south of Seoul, where the Seoul International Aerospace & Defense Exhibition (ADEX) is under way, according to the Air Force.
During the event to be presided over by Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Won In-choul, major Air Force assets, such as F-15K and KF-16 fighter jets, will put on aerial displays of skill, along with U.S. Air Force F-16 aircraft, officials said.
The ceremony is also expected to bring together former air force chiefs as well as foreign delegates from countries that participated in the 1950-53 Korean War, it added.
With a goal to promote the military service and indigenous aircraft to the public, the Air Force is also scheduled appoint seven citizens as “public pilots” who will fly above the peninsula in home-grown T-50 and FA-50 jets.
South Korea’s Air Force was established on Oct. 1, 1949, with around 1,600 personnel and 20 light aircraft.
Upon the outbreak of the Korean War in 1950, the Air Force acquired 10 F-51 Mustang fighter bombers, its first-ever fighter jets, from U.S. forces and carried out operations.
Seventy years on, the Air Force has made marked progress and now possesses state-of-the-art weapons systems like F-35A stealth fighters and KC-330 aerial tankers, and it aims to be a leading aerospace power that could rule future warfare, according to officers.