Warships from seven nations have been visiting the Ethiopian port of Massawa for the country's Navy Day celebrations on Monday (18 February).
Warships from seven nations have been visiting the Ethiopian port of Massawa for the country's Navy Day celebrations on Monday (18 February). Among them were ships from the great powers in the Indian Ocean. "Dalniyvostochniy Komsolets" of the Soviet Navy, and "Le Salle" of the United States Navy. Britain, France, pakistan, Iran and the Sudan were also represented.
Emperor Haile Selassie presided over the ceremonies at the port's memorial. There was a moment of concern when a woman waving a flag broke from the crowd and ran towards the Emperor's car, but his guards moved quickly and the incident was over before many people knew what had happened.
Several naval contingents, including one from Italy, laid wreaths in honour of the Ethiopians who had died in the Italian campaign.
The celebrations were completed by a colourful graduation ceremony of Ethiopian officers at the Massawa base. There was also a sports competition between home and visiting units, with the Ethiopians jubilant at their overall victory.
The Ethiopian navy is the samllest branch of its armed forces with about 1,400 men. The army numbers about 41,000.