China to modernise military: Defence minister



China to modernise military: Defence minister Beijing: China will "steadily" reform its national defence and modernise its military forces, the defence minister said on the occasion of the Army Day which is observed on August 01 every year. Minister of National Defence Liang Guanglie made the remarks while celebrating the 84th anniversary of the founding of the People's Liberation Army (PLA).

"In the world today, peace, development and cooperation remain the trend of the times. However, world peace and development faces multiple challenges. China is going through unprecedented and extensive social changes," Liang was quoted as saying by Xinhua.

He said the Army is facing "more arduous and heavier tasks", and should stay alert to challenges.

He called for enhancing the capability of the Army to accomplish diversified military tasks, with the "capability to win local wars".

"We will expand and deepen preparedness for military struggle, vigorously carry out military training, promote innovation in defence science and equipment development," he said.

He called for accelerating modern logistics, intensifying training of "high-calibre" and "new-type" military personnel.

Liang - also a member of the Central Military Commission - said the Army will continue to oppose and deter secessionist activities for "Taiwan independence", and make due contribution to China's "complete reunification".

He also pledged to work for long-lasting peace and prosperity of the world.

"We will continue to follow the independent foreign policy of peace, deepen friendly exchanges and cooperation with the armed forces of other countries and contribute to building a harmonious world of enduring peace and common prosperity."

The PLA, over the past 84 years, has made outstanding contribution to safeguarding the nation's sovereignty, security and territorial integrity as well as advancing China's economic and social development, he added.

IANS