KARACHI: Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi visits a Chinese navy ship during Sea Guardians 2020 exercise on Thursday.—INP
KARACHI: Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi visits a Chinese navy ship during Sea Guardians 2020 exercise on Thursday.—INP

KARACHI: Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi has said that the naval exercise with China is a manifestation of treasured friendship and mutual trust that existed between the two countries.

On the fourth day of the sixth bilateral drill ‘Sea Guardians 2020’, which is being conducted between the navies of Pakistan and People’s Liberation Army, Admiral Abbasi visited the PLA (Navy) Flag Ship Yinchuan on Thursday.

Upon his arrival on-board PLA (Navy) Ship Yinchuan, the naval chief was warmly welcomed by PLA Deputy Commander Southern Thea­­tre Command Vice Adm­iral Dong Jun. A smartly turned out contingent presented the guard of honour to the naval chief, who was then given a briefing on-board.

Later, Admiral Abbasi had a meeting with PLA Deputy Commander Southern Theatre Command Vice Admiral Dong Jun where matters of mutual interest came under discussion.

During the meeting, the naval chief highlighted that the exercise was a manifestation of treasured friendship and mutual trust that existed between the two countries.

“The ongoing exercise will carry forward our relationship to new heights of glory,” he said, adding that the exercise was aimed at not only countering maritime threats together but also solidifying the common resolve of both the navies of ensuring regional peace and security.

He expressed the hope that regular conduct of such exercises would further en­­h­­­ance the cooperation and interoperability bet­ween the two navies.

Later, the Chief of the Naval Staff also interacted with the PLA (Navy) ship’s crew and appreciated their professional competence and morale. PLA Deputy Commander Southern Theatre Command Vice Admiral Dong Jun thanked the naval chief for his visit on-board PLA (Navy) Ship.

Exercise Sea Guardians 2020, the sixth in the series, covers a wide spectrum of maritime and naval operations by ships, aerial platforms and marine forces.

Exercise Sea Guardians 2020 is aimed at sharing professional experiences on contemporary and non-traditional threats at sea, improving security cooperation and promoting safe and sustainable maritime environment in the region.

During the exercise, frontline destroyers/frigates along with air and other assets and Marines/Special Forces from Pakistan Navy and PLA (Navy) will carry out advance level joint drills and naval manoeuvre in the North Arabian Sea.

In addition, during the harbour phase, various professional and social activities will also be conducted.

Published in Dawn, January 10th, 2020