China and U.S. to join Pakistan naval exercise
Tuesday February 20, 2007
KARACHI (Reuters) - China is to take part in a naval exercise with Pakistan, the United States and six other countries aimed at consolidating efforts in the war against terrorism, the commander of the Pakistani navy said on Tuesday.
The exercise will be held from March 6 to 13 in the Indian Ocean off Pakistan, Admiral Mohammad Afzal Tahir told a news conference.
"The exercise is being planned to consolidate the gains made so far in the joint fight against terrorism," Tahir said. "We want to play a more dynamic role in this aspect in the region."
Two Chinese navy ships would participate for the first time, he said, while observers from 16 other countries would be on hand for the exercise, codenamed "Aman" (peace).
Forces from Britain, France, Italy, Malaysia, Turkey and Bangladesh will also take part.
Pakistan's old rival India had not been invited to the exercise, he said, but it would send a speaker to an international maritime conference that would be held during the exercise.