The Chinese naval hospital ship Ark Peace has been welcomed in the South Pacific nation of Vanuatu, with the floating hospital set to commence an eight-day humanitarian mission providing free healthcare and assistance to those in need.
Part of Mission Harmony, the vessel sailed from Papua New Guinea last Wednesday where it provided more than 6,200 medical consultations to the local population.
In total, since 2008 the Ark Peace has visited 37 countries and administered medical services to over 180,000 people.
On hand to greet the travelling ship, Prime Minister of Vanuatu Charlot Salwai along with a team of dignitaries hosted a welcome ceremony at Port Vila wharf in the capital city.
Arriving just days before the nation's independence celebrations, Salwai said it demonstrated the friendly relations between two countries.
Over the coming days, Ark Peace will conduct on-board medical care and also dispatch several teams to assist in local hospitals, villages and communities.
The medical staff from Ark Peace will also join their counterparts from Vanuatu to carry out joint surgical operations for training purposes.
As well as this, the ship's health service and cultural entertainment team will go to local schools and centers for the disabled to share health knowledge and showcase Chinese culture with engaging performances.