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Malaysia's Defense Minister Visits French Attack Submarine Shipyard

Najib Razak
Malaysia's deputy prime minister has visited a French naval shipyard in Cherbourg where Scorpene attack submarines are built. Malaysia ordered two of the subs in 2002 with plans to have both in service by 2009.

On Friday, Najib Razak - who is also Malaysia's Defense Minister - toured a Scorpene under construction for the Chilean navy. He also visited the Malaysian Submarine School in Brest, France, 500 kilometers west of Paris.

Mr. Najib is in France for a five-day working visit, which includes discussing the submarines developed jointly by French and Spanish companies.

The medium-sized attack submarines, costing about $400 million each, are designed for Malaysia's coastal protection. The naval upgrade comes amid growing concerns of terrorism in the Malacca Strait, one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world.

Some information for this report provided by AFP.