Sailors attached to the 43rd Chinese naval escort taskforce man the rails as the ship arrives at the Owendo Port in Libreville, Gabon, on July 8, 2023. (Xinhua/Liu Zhehao)
By Tang Siyu and Wu Kangci
LIBREVILLE, July 11 -- After concluding its visit to Nigeria, the 43rd Chinese naval escort taskforce arrived in Libreville, Gabon, on July 8 for a four-day friendly visit.
The taskforce ships docked at the Owendo Port in Libreville at 9 am, where they were welcomed by more than 300 people led by Chinese Ambassador to Gabon and Secretary-General of the Gabonese Ministry of National Defense.
After the both sides exchanged greetings, the commander of the visiting taskforce inspected the Gabonese naval honor guard. And then, Chinese ambassador together with Gabonese defense secretary-general boarded the Chinese naval guided-missile destroyer Nanning for a visit, where the secretary-general inspected the honor guard of the ship Nanning, accompanied by the captain and the political commissar of the ship.
In the afternoon, the Chinese taskforce members visited the Gabonese navy vessel MBINI for exchanges and helped with their equipment maintenance. Gabonese marines also boarded the Chinese comprehensive supply ship Weishanhu to visit and learn about Chinese special combat weapons and equipment. The two sides exchanged operational experiences regarding counter-terrorism, anti-piracy, and armed rescue.
During the visit to Gabon, the taskforce commander will call on senior Gabonese military and civilian officials and visit local orphanage. Chinese sailors will engage in cultural and military exchange activities with Gabonese naval troops, and participate in the cultural, sports and military exchanges, artistic gala organized by the Chinese Embassy in Gabon, as well as the farewell reception hosted by the Gabonese Navy. The guided-missile frigate Sanya will host vessel open days, while the ship Nanning will organize a deck reception.
The Gabonese troops welcome the visiting 43rd Chinese naval escort taskforce at the Owendo Port in Libreville, Gabon on July 8, 2023. (Xinhua/Wu Kangci)