China dispatched a fleet of ships with the direction of Djibouti in the Horn of Africa. The vessels are carrying Chinese military troops. Their mission is to build the first international military base on behalf of China. The facility will be a key element in Chinese plans for a global reach. Some experts view this move as a strategy to consolidate Chinese presence at the location.
The First International Military Base Will Share Location with French, American, and Japanese Facilities
On Wednesday, a Chinese editorial dispelled any rumors that turned this facility into a tool to seek control over the world. The publication claimed that this operation was ordered for the sole purpose of protecting the safety of its nation. The newspaper highlighted the fact that the region harbors other international military bases under the control of Japan, France, and the U.S. military.
The region of choice, Djibouti, is a small country part of the Horn of Africa. The location raises international interest for its strategic positioning near a popular shipping route, Suez Canal. On top of that, its stable status in the middle of an extremely unstable corner of the world makes it more appeal to powerful parties.
This Mission Has the Goal to Support Peacekeeping across Africa and Asia
Last year, China ordered the creation of a logistic base here. The purpose of this facility will be to maintain support for peacekeeping off the coasts of Somalia and Yemen. Even though Beijing describes it as a logistics unit, this appears to be its very first international military base. For the moment, it is unclear when the facility will become operational according to a report.
“The base will ensure China’s performance of missions, such as escorting, peace-keeping and humanitarian aid in Africa and west Asia.”
The United States deployed one of its largest bases in this small country with a permanent status. The Camp Lemonier hosts more than 4,000 military members. China’s decision has already sparked worries for a potential conflict between these two superpowers. A U.S. congressman claimed that a Chinese facility would endanger American military settlements in the region.
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