China's 26th convoy fleet to Gulf of Aden and Somali waters arrived at Port of Antwerp on Thursday for a five-day friendly visit, marking the first time that a Chinese navy formation visits Belgium.
"Even mountains and seas cannot distance people with common aspirations," fleet commander Wang Zhongcai quoted a Chinese saying at the welcome ceremony, which was attended by Provincial Commander of Antwerp Paul Haccuria and Chinese Embassador to Belgium Qu Xing, among others.
In 2000, missile frigate "Wandelaar" from the Belgian navy visited Shanghai, and Chinese navy fleet's visit to Antwerp this time will further enhance mutual understanding and trust, and promote exchanges and cooperation between the two sides, Wang said.
Belgium is the first country China's 26th convoy fleet visits after completing its escort mission in Gulf of Aden and Somali waters. China sent its first convoy fleet to Somali waters for anti-piracy mission in December 2008.