China holds multi-country maritime exercises

Source:Xinhua Published: 2014-4-23 14:17:45

Multi-country maritime exercises were held off the coast of the eastern Chinese city of Qingdao on Wednesday.

This is the first time for the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy to organize multilateral maritime exercises.

Nineteen ships, seven helicopters and marine corps from eight countries including China, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Singapore, Indonesia, India, Malaysia and Brunei were organized into three task forces to conduct the exercises dubbed "Maritime Cooperation - 2014."

Focusing on joint search and rescue, the drills included task force communication, formation movement, maritime replenishment supply, joint rescue, joint anti-hijacking and small firearms shooting.

Chinese destroyer Harbin was designated as the command ship and Yang Junfei, deputy chief of the Beihai Fleet, as the exercise commander.

The exercises were aimed at enhancing mutual understanding, trust and friendship among maritime forces and promoting their cooperation in safeguarding maritime security to better respond to emergencies.

Zhang Junshe, a researcher with the PLA's Naval Military Studies Research Institute, said the exercises highlighted responses to non-traditional security threats such as piracy, terrorism and natural disasters which cross borders and no country can handle alone.

He noted the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004, the Philippine typhoon in 2013 and the on-going search for the missing Malaysian airlines MH370, all of which have shown the urgent need for cooperation when dealing with non-traditional security threats.

"The exercises deal with real threats," he said.

Posted in: Military

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