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Chinese navy conduct anti-piracy exercises off Somali coast

A file photo.

BEIJING (PTI): Chinese naval task force, deployed in Gulf of Aden to fight Somali pirates, has staged a special anti-piracy exercise to improve rapid-reaction ability of its ship-based helicopters.

The 5th Chinese naval escort task force staged an anti-piracy exercise in which helicopters were trained to get out of hangers and take off in four minutes, the Chinese official military newspaper PLA Daily reported.

The Gulf of Aden and the waters off the Somali coast have a spacious sea area. The pirates appear in small groups and attack merchant ships in a fast way.

To shorten the time for the helicopters to make preparation for the take off, the task force improved and optimised the operational steps, resulting in shortening the time for combat deployment grade transition of the helicopters, it said.

To improve rapid-reaction ability of the ship-based helicopters in air escort, the command post of the task force also organised a series trainings including rapid combat grade transition, flight at daybreak and night and slide landing.

We arrange a multiple of subjects including low-altitude flight, ultra low-altitude flight, hovering, sliding and landing on the ship in a flight sortie to improve the flight skill of the pilots under complicated weather conditions, Cui Ao, captain of the helicopter crew of the 'Guangzhou' warship said.

The rapid-reaction ability of the helicopter in escort process was greatly improved through organising the close-to-actual-situation trainings and exercises, he said.

China along with other countries including India has deployed its naval task force off the Somali coast to counter attacks raids on Chinese as well as international merchant vessels by pirates.


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