China Names New Navy Chief

China has appointed Lieutenant Admiral Shen Jinlong as new naval chief.

In 2014, Shen led several Chinese warships at the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) international maritime exercises around the Hawaiian islands, the first time China had participated in large-scale U.S.-led naval drills.

Later, he made an official military visit to San Diego. Shen, 60, replaced outgoing naval commander Wu Shengli, 71, who have stepped down after reaching retirement age.

The change comes at a time when China’s rapid military development has alarmed its neighbors, particularly through the expansion of its naval fleet to back its growing assertiveness over territorial claims in the South China Sea.