China invites foreign experts to watch military drill
Beijing: China has for the first time invited a large contingent of foreign military experts to observe exercises by the People`s Liberation Army (PLA).
About 350 foreign military personnel were invited to observe the two-day drill held in Jinan, capital of the eastern Shandong Province, as part of efforts to boost openness in the military sector.
Military attaches, students and observers from 89 countries watched the exercise involving a light mechanised infantry brigade of the PLA`s Ground Force, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
The entire drill, including preparations and actions for battle, was open to foreign personnel. Tactics like night combat and air and ground coordination in different conditions were showcased during the manoeuvres.
"This drill is the first time China`s battle preparation and coordination practice were introduced," said Ong Yulin, a Singaporean military attache.
The exercise allows foreigners to better understand China`s military cooperation with other countries, he said.
"Conducting such a drill can help foreign countries to know the real Chinese army and is conducive to deepening friendship and boosting mutual understanding," said Zhao Bao, an official from the Ministry of National Defense.
The Chinese army`s open attitude to the outside world shows its candidness and confidence and its resolve for peaceful development, he said.
The drill began yesterday and lasted two days.
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