Last year China started construction of a logistics base in strategically located Djibouti, on the North Western edge of the Indian Ocean and in the Horn of Africa. Djibouti is the first military base of China, located overseas. Ships carrying personnel from Chinese military have left from China for setting up and modernizing military facilities at Djibouti to hone global reach. Humanitarian and peacekeeping missions are taking place off the coasts of Somalia and Yemen and accordingly, it is from here that naval vessels will be supplied to take part in these missions. Besides this, conducting emergency rescues, evacuating missions, joint exercises, military co-operations, ensuring security of international strategic seaways, etc will also be part of the missions.
India is worried that Djibouti would prove to be one more ‘string of pearls’ of China’s assets and military alliances, thus ringing Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Bangladesh.
To set up a support base in Djibouti, a number of ships have departed on July 11, 2017 for setting up a support base in Djibouti, as per reports by the State news agency. An order regarding the Djibouti construction base was read by Shen Jinlong, Navy Commander but nothing about formal beginning of operations at the base was stated. It was stated that it was only after accords with common interest of people of both countries and friendly negotiations, that a decision to construct the base was made finally.
Many diplomatic circles have been speculating persistently that other such bases would be built by China, for example in Pakistan. However this has been dismissed by the government.
Reports state that military development is taking place in China, for the sake of the country’s own protection and not for gaining control over the world.