The Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy’s hospital ship Peace Ark (866), currently on its Harmonious Mission 2018, arrived in port city Valparaíso on November 29 for its first friendly visit to Chile.
The Peace Ark will also participate in the celebration marking the 200th anniversary of the establishment of the Chilean Navy and the EXPONAVAL 2018, the 11th Chilean International Naval & Maritime Exhibition and Congress for Latin America.
Chile is the 43rd country visited by the Peace Ark since its commission to the PLA Navy in 2008. Located in the southwestern part of South America, Chile is close to the Pacific Ocean and has a coastline of about 10,000 kilometers. Chile is also the narrowest country in the world.
During the visit, the commanding officer of China’s Harmonious Mission 2018 will pay courtesy calls on Chilean naval generals, mayor of Valparaíso, and other military and government officials of Chile.
Chinese officers and soldiers will visit the Naval Museum and military hospitals of Chile as well as attend the EXPONAVAL 2018. They will also take part in friendly football games with their Chilean counterparts.
The Peace Ark will organize open day activities and carry out friendly exchanges with navies from a number of countries.
The Chilean Navy celebrations include international fleet review and maritime exercises involving naval vessels from China, the US, and the UK.
It is learnt that the Peace Ark made a special trip to Chile to take part in this event after having successfully completed friendly visits and medical service tasks in 10 countries in Oceania and Central and South America. This is the fourth time that a Chinese naval ship visits Chile, after three previous visits in 1997, 2009, and 2013.
Huang Panyue/ China Military Online (PLA)