Chinese Navy task force ships, destroyer Jinan, frigate Yiyang and supply ship Qiandaohu completed their five-day visit to Timor-Leste as they sailed out of Dili harbor on January 20.
The official visit of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy Escort Task Group 152 marked the first time Chinese Naval vessels visited the Southeast Asian nation.
During the visit Timor-Leste’s Minister of Defense, H.E. Cirilo Cristóvão, recognized the People’s Republic of China as steadfast supporters of Timor-Leste’s “fight for independence to be a sovereign State in the world” and said that it was “a great pleasure to see bilateral relations in the defense area being strengthened.”
Cooperation between the two countries in the defense area has included the construction of the Ministry of Defense Building, visits of Timorese defense officials to the Chinese Ministry of National Defense and the Headquarters of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army and the professionalization of the FDTL through Army-to-Army contact including training of FDTL members at the China Military Academy.
During the visit officers and soldiers of the Task Force met with their Timorese counterparts, conducted an Anti-Piracy Seminar and engaged in sporting competitions. The Commodore of the Task Force Wang Jianxun met with the Commander of the Timor-Leste Defense Force, Major General Lere Anan Timur.
Spokesperson for the Timor Leste Sixth Constitutional Government, Minister of State Agio Pereira noted: “this official visit of the Chinese Navy Task Force is another positive development in a long history of support and cooperation between Timor-Leste and China. The Government appreciates the strengthening of our bilateral relations through these interactions and the ongoing efforts to build friendly and constructive cooperation between our two nations.”