SINGAPORE, May 15 (Xinhua) — The cooperation between the Chinese Navy and itsinternational counterparts is set to expand, a senior commander of the People’sLiberation Army (PLA) said on Wednesday.
Speaking at a maritime defense exhibition in Singapore, Jiang Weilie, commander ofthe South China Sea fleet of Chinese Navy, called on countries to boost exchange ofinformation and cooperation on maritime security and push for peace and security atsea.
“The Navy, by nature, involves interaction with other nations, and the PLA Navy hasbeen active in cooperation with its international counterparts,” he said.
He cited China’s joint exercises with Russia and Pakistan, the joint patrol operationsinvolving the forces of China and Vietnam in the Beibu Gulf, as well as the ChineseNavy’s escorting missions in the Gulf of Aden and the Somali waters.
Chinese warships on their way have been making port calls at Singapore’s ChangiNaval Base in recent years, too.
“The cooperation is important for security at sea, and it will only grow going ahead,”Jiang said. “The PLA Navy will definitely be playing our part in international cooperationto safeguard maritime security.”
Jiang outlined five principles for international cooperation in maritime security, sayingthat such cooperation should firstly be based on equal footing, and be practical andmutually benefiting.
Due consideration should also be given to the respective different conditions of thecountries involved, he said.
The general also called on the countries to establish and optimize the mechanisms formaritime security cooperation — perhaps starting with the fields where the mostcommon ground can be found, such as combating non-conventional threats likepirates, terrorism and drug trafficking.
He also called for efforts to safeguard the freedom of navigation and safety on theSouth China Sea, saying that China has always been of the position that the freedomof navigation and safety should be safeguarded in accordance with international law.
Finally, Jiang called for a key role for the United Nations in international maritimesecurity cooperation, citing the previous examples where the UN peace missions havebeen well-organized due to the respect for the UN Charter and its principles.
The International Maritime Defense Exhibition and Conference runs from May 14 toMay 16 in Singapore, with 194 defense technology and equipment exhibitors fromclose to 30 countries as well as many senior defense and military officials.