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HANOI, August 5 (Itar-Tass) - Russia’s former naval base in Cam Ranh, southern Vietnam’s Khanh Hoa province, will not be used as a military facility for foreign countries anymore, Vietnamese National Defense Minister, Sr. Lt. Gen. Phung Quang Thanh said in an interview with Itar-Tass on Monday ahead of his visit to Russia.
“Vietnam’s position is not to allow any foreign state to deploy its military base in Cam Ranh,” he said. “Vietnam plans to create an international centre for ship repair and maintenance instead and to manage it on its own.”
Phung Quang Thanh said the centre would receive commercial and war ships that will make calls in Vietnam for repair and maintenance. Moreover, the yet-to-be centre will also provide accommodation and medical services for foreign seafarers.
Russia’s Pacific Fleet had had its naval base in Cam Rahn, its biggest base abroad, for 23 years. In May 2002 Russia officially returned this facility to Vietnam.