The Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) will conduct naval training drills in the western Pacific in mid to late June 2011.

Xinhua news agency quoted the Defence Ministry as saying, “The exercises will take place in international waters and are not targeted at any specific country. This will be a regular drill according to the annual plan [of the PLA].”

The ministry did not disclose further information about either the location or the ships that would be participating.

PLA chief of general staff Chen Bingde had previously confirmed that the country was building its first 300m-long aircraft carrier in the north-east port city of Dalian, China.

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