Two ships carrying Chinese soldiers and military equipment left the southern port of Zhanjiang for Djibouti on Tuesday to set up Beijing’s first overseas military base.
According to Efe news, it will be the first such Chinese facility to be set up outside its borders.
The base will support China's military operations in Africa and Asia as part of international humanitarian missions, escorting ships to avoid piracy and peacekeeping, the Army said.
After China showed interest in opening such a base in 2015, Beijing reiterated many times that the facility would not be for military expansion but to provide logistics support to international activities and protection of maritime routes.
Djibouti already hosts military bases set up by the US, France and Japan, which support warships escorting convoys carrying humanitarian aid to different countries in the region and guard the waters against maritime piracy, apart from other objectives.
(With IANS inputs)