Chinese Stealth Fighter Makes First Test Flight

Images and witness accounts posted online Tuesday appeared to show that China’s stealth fighter prototype had made its first test flight, even as Robert Gates, the U.S. Defense Secretary who has downplayed China’s stealth aircraft capability, was meeting Chinese civilian leaders in Beijing.

The J-20, which has been undergoing runway tests for the last two weeks or so, took off from an airstrip at the Chengdu Aircraft Design Institute just before 1 p.m. local time and flew for about 20 minutes, according to several witness accounts posted by Chinese bloggers.

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