VIENTIANE – The “Peace Train-2022” joint humanitarian medical rescue exercises and medical service activities between the Chinese and Lao militaries are being held in Phonhong of central Laos’ Vientiane Province.

The event launched on Monday marks the first time for the military medical train of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) of China to operate abroad, and to collaborate with a foreign hospital while handling medical treatment and epidemic prevention at the same time.

Yu Min, director of the joint exercises on the Chinese side, told reporters on Monday that apart form the hospital train, the exercises also involve medical equipment including the negative pressure ambulance and the mobile COVID-19 lab.

The joint exercises aim to strengthen the ability of medical departments of the Chinese and Lao militaries to collaborate in bringing succor to the sick and the wounded, and improve the related mechanism and process, according to Yu.

Khampheng Phoummakeo, head of military medical department of the Lao People’s Armed Forces’ General Logistics Department, said in his speech at the launch ceremony that the joint exercises will not only enhance the professional ability of the two militaries’ medical and logistics departments, but will further promote the traditional friendship and comprehensive cooperative relations between the two militaries.

Chen Chi, deputy head of the Logistic Support Department of the Central Military Commission of China, said in his speech at the launch ceremony via video that the joint exercises and medical service activities are efforts to implement the important cooperation consensus between the two countries and the two militaries.

Lao Deputy Defense Minister Vongkham Phommakone told reporters during the joint exercises on Monday that the exercises mark the fourth time for the medical team of the Chinese PLA’s “Peace Train” to come to Laos, noting that the previous series of “Peace Train” activities have achieved tremendous and far-reaching results.

During the event on Monday, a ceremony was also held for the handover of the nucleic acid testing equipment and reagents, masks and other anti-COVID-19 supplies donated by the PLA to the Lao side.

The China-Laos “Peace Train-2022” joint exercises and medical service activities will last to July 28.