Transferring the US’s largest permanent military base in Africa to China could cripple the US’s social, military and economic influence in the region.
The tiny state of Djibouti is home to the US largest permanent military installation in Africa that includes 4,000 troops and a fleet of US assassination drones that run bombing missions in regional Muslim countries.
Now, Djibouti has ordered the US to vacate its secondary Obock military base in the country in a bid to turn over the installation to the Chinese military and its contingent of 10,000 troops, raising major concerns in Washington, which holds the largest military base in Djibouti, Camp Lemonnier.
The Horn of Africa nation, strategically located in the critical entrance from the Indian Ocean to the Red Sea, lies at the gateway to the busy Suez Canal waterway and provides a port to neighboring landlocked Ethiopia.
The US Defense Department pays Djibouti nearly $63 million per year for the use of the Camp Lemonnier military base, which also serves as one of the world's largest drone bases.