Sino-Malaysian mil­i­tary drills get un­der­way

China Daily (USA) - - CHINA - ByWANG XIAODONG in Paya In­dah, Malaysia wangx­i­aodong@ chi­

Ex­er­cise Aman Youyi 2016, a joint mil­i­tary ex­er­cise be­tween China and Malaysia co­de­named Peace and Friend­ship Ex­er­cise 2016, was launched in Paya In­dah Wet­lands in Se­lan­gor, Malaysia, on Tues­day.

“The mil­i­tary ex­er­cise serves as an im­por­tant plat­form for the two armies to jointly tackle chal­lenges and main­tain re­gional peace and sta­bil­ity,” Gen­eral Fang Fenghui, chief of the Joint Staff Depart­ment of China’s Cen­tral Mil­i­tary Com­mis­sion, said at an open­ing cer­e­mony for the event.

“We hope the two armies take the op­por­tu­nity to con­tinue co­op­er­a­tion in fight­ing ter­ror­ism, tack­ling mar­itime chal­lenges, safe­guard­ing mar­itime se­cu­rity and pro­mot­ing re­gional peace and sta­bil­ity,” Fang said.

The ex­er­cise, in­volv­ing about 300 mil­i­tary mem­bers from China and Malaysia, with ob­servers from the Royal Thai Armed Forces, has a theme of hu­man­i­tar­ian as­sis­tance and dis­as­ter re­lief. It will fo­cus on in­door shoot­ing, hostage res­cue, com­bat skills, jun­gle track­ing and sur­vival skills, and will run through Fri­day.

“Mul­ti­lat­eral ini­tia­tives such as Ex­er­cise Aman Youyi help to create greater syn­chro­niza­tion and stronger aware­ness in re­la­tion to hu­man­i­tar­ian as­sis­tance and dis­as­ter re­lief op­er­a­tions,” said Zulk­ifeli bin Mohd Zin, Malaysia’s de­fense chief.

“The ex­er­cise will tran­scend po­lit­i­cal ide­olo­gies, dif­fer­ing doc­trines, race, reli­gion or na­tional af­fil­i­a­tions, and act as an ef­fec­tive plat­form to strengthen ca­ma­raderie and build con­fi­dence,” he added.

China and Malaysia had a sim­i­lar, but larger-scale, joint ex­er­cise in Septem­ber last year, in which mil­i­tary forces from the two coun­tries par­tic­i­pated in drills on joint ves­sel es­cort, res­cu­ing hi­jacked ves­sels and dis­as­ter re­lief.

“This is the first time I have par­tic­i­pated in a joint ex­er­cise be­tween China and Malaysia,” said Ryanda Adrian, a lieu­tenant with the Roy­alMalaysian Navy. “I hope we can co­op­er­ate with the Chi­nese Peo­ple’s Lib­er­a­tion Army in real mis­sions in the fu­ture.”

Yang Xi, a 22-year-old sol­dier from PLA’s South­ern The­ater Com­mand, said this is the first time she has been abroad for a mis­sion.

“I will take part in a com­bat skills ex­er­cise in the next few days, and some of my col­leagues will take part in jun­gle trac­ing and sur­vival drills,” she said. “I am very ex­cited and hope I can per­form well.”

Yang said she will also par­tic­i­pate in some sports ac­tiv­i­ties, such as tug-of-war, with Malaysian coun­ter­parts in the next few days.

Fang Fenghui, chief of the Joint Staff Depart­ment of China’s Cen­tral Mil­i­tary Com­mis­sion

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