Commander Tours Chinese Naval Base

Commander Tours Chinese Naval BaseCommander Tours Chinese Naval Base

Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari visited a naval base in Shanghai on Monday and held talks with senior Chinese naval officials.  

In his meeting with the commander of the Shanghai Naval Base, Wang Yung, Sayyari expressed hope the visit could pave the way for expansion of bilateral defense ties between Tehran and Beijing, IRNA reported.   

The Chinese naval official, for his part, said the visit of an Iranian navy commander to China is the first of its kind in the history of military cooperation between the two countries and described it as a "turning point" in bilateral naval ties.  

The navy chief, who is accompanied by a high-ranking military delegation, has been in China since Sunday in a bid to explore ways of promoting Sino-Iran defense cooperation.

In recent years Iranian naval forces have sought to expand maritime relations and exchange of expertise with Tehran’s regional allies including Russia and China.  

Two Russian warships docked at the Caspian Sea port of Anzali in northern Iran this month. A year earlier two vessels of the navy made a port call to the Russian city of Astrakhan.

In September, a Chinese fleet of warships anchored in the southern port city of Bandar Abbas for the first time that Chinese warships have ever sailed in the Persian Gulf. It came shortly after Iran’s naval forces thwarted an attack by pirates on a Chinese container ship in the Gulf of Aden.

The Changchun missile destroyer and the Changzhou missile frigate of China's 17th Naval Fleet took part in a joint drill with Iranian naval forces during their stay.  

In 2013, Iranian naval vessels, including a destroyer and helicopter carrier, docked at China’s port city of Zhangjiagang.

Iranian naval forces and fleets have also increased their presence in international waters as part of missions to protect naval routes and provide security for merchant vessels and tankers against sea piracy.