Qiongsha-class Attack Transport
The Qiongsha-class Attack Transport ships were built in the 1980s. The Qiongsha [ NATO reporting name] class consists of six troop transport ships introduced into the PLA Navy in the early 1980s. While it is a troop transport ship it has no amphibious landing capability, it serves primarily as a transport and logistics vessel in support of amphibious operations. The Qiongsha class, aimilar in appearance to small passenger liners, were designed as transport and logistics vessel to support PLA troops stationed on PRC-occupied islands in the South China Sea. The 2,150 tons vessels are equipped with two small landing craft to ofload troops and cargo, but cannot directly land troops on shore. All six hulls (Nanyun 830~835) were built in Guangzhou and are serving with the South Sea Fleet. As of 2004, four were still believed to be operational.
In the early 1990s, the PLA Navy converted one of the Qiongsha class into a hospital ship. The vessel (the Nankang, hull Nanyun 832) was painted white with a red cross painted on its funnel. At least another hull (Nanyun 833) was subsequently converted into the same role.
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