23:17 GMT13 April 2021
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    The Royal Canadian Navy warship Vancouver plans to showcase upgraded surface gunnery capabilities during a series of exercises in the Western Pacific with partner nations, Canada’s armed forces announced in a press release on Monday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The Vancouver was included in a modernization and life-extension upgrade of Canada’s Halifax-Class ships, according to the release.

    "HMCS Vancouver’s deployment underlines the strategic importance of the Asia-Pacific region, of increasing international interest in the area, and the opportunities to operate alongside partner navies," the release explained.

    The Vancouver was included in a modernization and life-extension upgrade of Canada’s Halifax-Class ships, according to the release.

    In the latest deployment, "HMCS Vancouver will showcase advanced surface gunnery capabilities designed to better protect sailors and warships operating in littoral waters," the release noted.

    Naval exercises by allies in the Western Pacific have become more frequent amid Chinese claims of sovereignty over the South China Sea, a key international waterway for about half the world’s commercial shipping traffic.

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