By Zhang Qian and Li Cheng
GULF OF ADEN, June 6 (ChinaMil) -- The guided-missile frigate Xuzhou (Hull 530) of the 29th Chinese naval escort taskforce that was on its escort mission carried out a simulate drill of sending special operations soldiers to rescue hijacked merchant ship in western Gulf of Aden on the morning of June 24, 2018.
The Chinese merchant ship Heilan Aroma participated in the drill by acting as the hijacked cargo ship. Heilan Aroma is a cargo ship with a displacement of over 30,000 tons, low speed and no security guards onboard. It is the type of ships that the escort taskforces often have to assign special operations soldiers onboard to escort.
Li Cheng, instructor of the special operations team, told the reporter that the armed rescue of hijacked merchant ship was an important yet difficult subject in the escort missions. This drill was conducted as close to the real situation as possible, including preliminary reconnaissance, launching attack boats, climbing onto cargo ship and searching cabins, etc, aiming to accumulate valuable experience for future escort missions.
After the drill, the special operations soldiers checked the merchant ship Heilan Aroma’s safety cabin, communicated anti-pirate experience with the crew, and introduced some effective methods of stopping pirate attacks.
After being escorted to the safe sea area, Heilan Aroma expressed its gratitude to the frigate Xuzhou (Hull 530) over very high frequency (VHF) radio. In return, Xuzhou frigate replied through VHF radio their appreciation for Heilan Aroma’s cooperation in the simulated drill.