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Russian cruiser to lead foreign warships in China's naval parade

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Russian missile cruiser Varyag. A File Photo

VLADIVOSTOK, (BNS): Russias missile cruiser Varyag will lead a fleet of foreign warships participating in a grand parade to mark the 60th anniversary of China's Navy.

The China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) kicked off the maritime ceremony to mark the 60th anniversary of its Navy on Monday off the coast of the eastern city of Qingdao, Shandong province, The Peoples Daily reported.

Twenty one naval vessels from 14 different nations and delegations from 29 foreign countries will join the parade. Indias INS Mumbai and INS Ranveer, the guided missile corvette INS Khanjar and the tanker INS Jyoti are also taking part in the review.

PLA Navy Commander Adm. Wu Shengli announced the start of the four-day festivities, which would include seminars, a sampan race and a fleet review.

The PLA Navy was founded on April 23, 1949 with nine warships and 17 boats obtained when a unit of the Kuomintang's second coastal defense fleet defected to the PLA.

The Varyag is a Slava-class missile cruiser built in 1989 which has been operating in the Russian Pacific Fleet since 1990.

The fleet review will also feature Chinese nuclear-powered submarines. Xinhua cited the PLA Navy Vice Adm. Ding Yiping as saying, "It is not a secret that China has nuclear submarines, which are key to safeguarding our country's national security.

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