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Two Japanese ships greeted at CFB Esquimalt with naval gun salute

Japanese Ship Kashima and Japanese Ship Hatakaze will be at CFB Esquimalt for a goodwill visit until Sunday, carrying about 550 crew members

Japanese Ship Kashima and Japanese Ship Hatakaze of the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Squadron docked at CFB Esquimalt on Thursday for a goodwill visit, carrying about 550 crew members.

The ships have been involved in exercises with the Royal Canadian Navy while on their current mission, and will head to Mexico when they leave the base on Sunday.

Their arrival was marked with a naval-gun salute, with the visiting ships firing 13 rounds followed by 13 rounds fired by the Naval Fleet School (Pacific) Seamanship Division.

Residents and boaters in the area of Brother’s Island, in Esquimalt Harbour and near Esquimalt Lagoon were alerted in advance about the salute.

The visitors will take part in wreath-laying ceremonies on Friday at the legislature at 9:30 a.m. and at God’s Acre Cemetery in Colwood at 10:30 a.m.

A musical performance by members of the Japanese crew and the Naden Band is set for Cameron Bandshell in Beacon Hill Park on Friday from 2-3 p.m.

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