China stages maritime exercise in South China Sea as US nuclear carrier sails byApril 12, 2018
President Xi Jinping on Thursday reviewed a massive drill by more than 100 Chinese Navy vessels in the South China Sea, which was launched as the US carried out what it described as a “routine” training exercise in nearby waters.
In a rare event, Xi boarded the destroyer Changsha and reviewed a fleet that included 76 combat ships and China’s lone aircraft carrier. He called on People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) commanders to build a “world class navy” that would be ready as the country steps into a “new era”.
Xi said the navy has a big role to play in China’s rejuvenation, adding that the “task of building a strong people’s navy has never been as urgent as today”. The three-day drill was launched in the South China Sea on Wednesday and features what the state media described as a “vast armada of ships”, including the aircraft carrier, submarines and combat ships.