Baku. 27 November. REPORT.AZ/ In a move that could pave the way for China opening a first ever full-fledged military base in the Indian Ocean, Beijing said on Thursday that it was for the first time in discussion with Djibouti to open an overseas military logistics facility on the Gulf of Aden, Report informs referring to the foreign media.
In a strategic location that will give the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) access to the Indian Ocean, the logistics facility will "help Chinese vessels better carry out UN operations like escort missions and humanitarian assistance", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei told reporters.
Earlier this week, the head of the US Africa Command announced the move, saying the logistics hub would enable Beijing to widen its reach in Africa. A number of countries already have a military presence in Djibouti, including the US, with the country's location crucial in providing access to the Gulf of Aden which is at the centre of anti-piracy operations.