Chinese Navy fleet visits Indonesia

16:52, December 27, 2010      

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Three Chinese Navy ships arrived on Monday in Indonesia's seaport of Tanjung Priok, carrying out friendship mission with several programs aimed at improving relations between the two countries.

Those ships, consisting of amphibious landing ship Kunlunshan, destroyer Lanzhou and supply ship Weishanshu and carrying at least 1,000 crews, were just settled their patrol service in Gulf of Aden and Somali waters, combating sea pirates that have been rampant in those area. The Chinese fleet of ships was welcomed by Chinese Ambassador in Indonesia Zhang Qiyue and Brigadier General Arif Suherman, commander of Indonesia's third navy base and Chinese community living in Indonesia.

Zhang Qiyue said that the visit of the fleet was part of jubilation to commemorate 60 years of Indonesia-China diplomatic relationship and year of friendship this year. The visit was also highly expected to improve the relationship between navies of the two countries.

The fleet commander Major General Wei Xueyi said in his remarks that the visit would enhance relations between the two navies and the two countries in general.

During the five-day visit in the seaport, Chinese crews are scheduled to conduct series of programs, including visiting Indonesian navy ship and compete with Indonesian navy in several sport events.

The fleet was China's sixth naval escort flotilla served to Gulf of Aden and Somali waters.

The previous five Chinese fleets to the Gulf of Aden have escorted 2,248 Chinese and foreign ships in 213 batches in this region, which has been plagued by pirate attacks, since December 2008.

The sixth fleet has escorted 615 ships, including five from Indonesia, during its service period, expelling 190 suspicious boats, saving one ship hijacked by Somali pirates and three chased by pirates.

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