China is exploring the possibility of building its first military base on the Atlantic ocean, according to classified intelligence reports viewed by the Wall Street Journal.

The proposed host for the military base is Equatorial Guinea, a small central African country of approximately 1.4 million people. Politically, Equatorial Guinea is a one-party state ruled by President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasongo for the past 42 years. The country consistently ranks among the worst in the world on human rights, with Freedom House assigning a zero score on political rights, lower than Eritrea, Iran, or Chad. Its economy is dominated by resource extraction, with crude petroleum exports accounting for 90 percent of government revenues. China is Equatorial Guinea’s largest trading partner.