The Gulf of Aden has witnessed military exercises by the Chinese navy off the coast of Yemen.
China’s 36th PLA Navy Escort Task Group (ETG) recently carried out a sea and air coordinated hostage rescue drill in the western waters of the Gulf of Aden, CGTN reported.
According to Chinese media, the exercise was designed to test the force’s ability to deal with emergencies.
China has been trying to link the exercises to the protection of its ships from piracy in waters packed with international and regional vessels involved in the war in Yemen since 2015.
However, the timing of its new maneuver in the Gulf of Aden came in the wake of a diplomatic move by the Chinese ambassador to Yemen, highlighted by recent meetings with leaders in Hadi’s puppet government.
Since 2009, according to a Chinese Admiral, China has been seeking to establish a military base in the Gulf of Aden, in order to support Chinese naval operations in the region, allowing for a long-term presence in the region.
Chinese objectives have recently shifted to regional ambitions, especially since e the United States and Britain have the aim of preventing China from being in this strategic area and thwarting the Chinese New Silk Roads plan by controlling the ports of Socotra and Mahrah.