A Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy fleet left Zhanjiang, this military port in south China's Guangdong Province Sunday morning for a goodwill visit to Australia and New Zealand.
The fleet will attend celebrations marking the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Commonwealth of Australia in Sydney and participate in an international fleet reviewing session there. The fleet is expected to travel 11,800 sea miles within 46 days before concluding the whole journey.
The Chinese fleet is composed of the latest China-built missile-equipped frigate No. 564 and the comprehensive depot ship No. 575. Yang Fucheng, deputy commander of the South China Sea Fleet, is commanding the visiting fleet.
The voyage is another major diplomatic move by the Chinese PLA Navy following the Chinese navy's visit to ports in 23 countries in Asia, America, Europe and Oceania.
(People's Daily 09/17/2001)