China Close to Opening Base in Djibouti

China is “very, very close” to finishing its military base in Djibouti, which is just a few miles from the US military’s hub in the country, said US Africa Command chief Marine Corps Gen. Thomas Waldhauser on Monday. China’s base will likely be finished this summer, and will be a central location for Chinese ships in the region as well as the several thousand peacekeepers the country has in Africa, said Waldhauser. The base will be a first for them, and so far there’s “a lot of learning going on,” Waldhauser said. There are “operational security concerns” for the US, because now a near-peer potential adversary will have an operating base within a few miles of a base that isn’t just a location for AFRICOM, but also US Central Command and US Special Operations Command. The US has voiced its concerns with the Djiboutian government, and it is “something we have to watch,” Waldhauser said.