13 December 2011

China Naval Base Abroad?

Are the Chinese going to establish their first naval base abroad?

China said Tuesday it is considering an offer from the Seychelles to host Chinese naval ships in the Indian Ocean island nation, highlighting the increasing global reach of a navy that recently launched its first aircraft carrier.
State-run media gave prominent coverage to the Seychelles offer to allow rest and resupply for Chinese ships in the multinational force conducting anti-piracy patrols off the coast of Somalia, which China has joined since late 2008.
But the reports were careful to reaffirm China's firm policy of not establishing permanent military bases overseas, a cornerstone of Beijing's claim not to be seeking regional hegemony or military alliances with other nations.
"China's position is clear. China has never set up military bases in other countries," Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin told reporters at a daily news briefing.
Chinese ships assigned to the anti-piracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden have visited several ports to allow their crews to rest and to take on supplies, including in Yemen and Oman on the Arabian Peninsula and Djibouti on the Horn of Africa.

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By: Brant

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