China has always been the defender of regional and world peace and stability

Monday August 01 2022
Chinese hosp

Local patients board the Chinese naval hospital ship Peace Ark to receive free medical services in Dar es Salaam on November 20, 2017. PHOTO | XINHUA

By Chen Mingjian

August 1, 2022 marks the 95th founding anniversary of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA). On August 1 nine-five years ago, the gunshot in Nanchang city of China was like lightning through the night sky and marked the birth of PLA.

Since then, this people’s military has been valiantly devoted to seeking liberation and happiness for the Chinese people and fighting for independence and rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

PLA has gone through a remarkable journey. During the past 95 years, under the absolute and strong leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and with extreme bravery, courage, devotion and sacrifice, the PLA has fought numerous battles and succeeded the revolutionary cause of liberating the Chinese people. Especially during the World Anti-Fascist War, PLA together with Chinese people, fought tenaciously and gallantly for 14 years, held ground in the main theater in the East of the war, thus making major contribution to its victory.

After the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, the PLA has effectively safeguarded national sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity whilst actively taken part in various and numerous national development activities. In the meantime, the PLA has secured extraordinary achievements in military buildup, grown from small to big, from weak to strong. Especially the past 10 years has witnessed the historic and remarkable changes and achievements in all aspects of PLA development, noticeably the leapfrog development and great achievements in weaponry and equipment.

An equipment system with the third-generation equipment as the mainstay and the fourth-generation as the backbone has been basically established which enables the PLA not only to effectively defend China but also to safeguard regional and world peace and stability.

PLA has been a vanguard force in safeguarding regional and international peace. PLA has been actively participated in regional and international peace initiatives. In United Nations Peacekeeping Operation (UNPKO), China first participated in 1990. Over the past 30 years, China’s armed forces have contributed nearly 50,000 service members to 25 UN peacekeeping missions and Chinese military peacekeepers have left their footprints in over 20 countries and regions including such African countries as the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Liberia, Sudan, South Sudan, Mali and the Central African Republic.

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China is the second largest contributor to both peacekeeping assessment and UN membership fees, and the largest troop-contributing country among the permanent members of the UN Security Council. Sixteen Chinese military peacekeepers have sacrificed their lives for the noble cause of peace. In safeguarding the maritime routes, China has dispatched naval ships to carry out regular vessel protection operations in the Gulf of Aden and the waters off the coast of Somalia since December 2008. Until now they have provided security protection for over 6,600 Chinese and foreign ships, and rescued, protected or assisted over 70 ships in distress. In international Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR), the PLA professionals were dispatched to conduct HADR operations in affected countries.

The PLA Navy’s hospital ship Peace Ark has visited more than 40 countries and regions, having provided medical services to over 230,000 people, including two visits to Tanzania in October 2010 and November 2017 providing free medical treatment to more than10,000 Tanzanian friends. The PLA actively participated in international anti-pandemic cooperation since COVID-19 broke out and has so far provided vaccine aid to the militaries of more than 30 countries. It has also carried out anti-pandemic cooperation with the militaries of over 50 countries, in the form of providing anti-pandemic supplies, sending military medical experts and holding experience-sharing video meetings.

The Chinese nation has achieved the tremendous transformation from standing up and growing prosperous to becoming strong, and that China’s national rejuvenation has become a historical inevitability. China is marching toward the second centenary goal of building a great modern socialist country in all respects. On the journey ahead, the PLA will always resolutely safeguard national interests of China and continuously step up its efforts to fully transform into a world-class military.

Firstly, China will unswervingly pursue defensive national defence policy. China’s socialist nature, strategic choice to take the road of peaceful development and independent foreign policy of peace, as well as the traditional Chinese culture advocating harmony, determine that China unswervingly pursues a defence policy that is defensive in nature. China will never seek hegemony, expansion or spheres of influence. Since the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, the Chinese military has never initiated any war or occupied any inch of another country’s land. History has proved and will continue to prove that the Chinese military has always been a staunch force in safeguarding world peace.

Secondly, China’s military will always be the solid pillar for safeguarding national sovereignty, security and development interests. China must not lose an inch of the territory that our ancestors have left behind. Taiwan belongs to China. China’s national unification will be absolutely realized. Peaceful reunification is the greatest aspiration of the Chinese people, and China is willing to do the utmost for that. However, if anyone dares to split Taiwan from the country, China will not hesitate to fight, even at any cost. The PLA will take all necessary measures at any cost to safeguard national unity. No one should underestimate the determination, will and power of the PLA.

Thirdly, China’s military will always provide strong support for building a community with a shared future for mankind. As President Xi Jinping points out, “to build a community with a shared future for mankind so as to pass on the torch of peace from generation to generation, to sustain development and to make civilization flourish is what people of all countries long for and the irreversible trend of world development today.” Guided by this thinking, the PLA will pursue the vision featuring common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security and will earnestly fulfill its international responsibilities and obligations, further deepen bilateral and multilateral military and security cooperation and proactively provide more public security goods to the world.

China and Tanzania enjoyed a long history of friendly exchanges ever dated back to the early 15th century. Since the establishment of bilateral diplomatic relations nearly six decades ago, China and Tanzania have been devoted brothers, trustworthy friends and sincere partners. China has always regarded Tanzania as its best friend and placed the development of friendly relations with Tanzania in an important position in its foreign relations. In June last year, President Xi Jinping and President Samia Suluhu Hassan had a phone conversation, showing the right direction for the development of comprehensive partnership of cooperation and presenting important opportunities for the development of bilateral relations. China will constantly push forward and deepen our friendly exchange and cooperation in all spectrum.

Eternal freedom and unity are highlighted in Tanzania national anthem. Sharing the same spirit and common goal, China is willing to maintain the global freedom and international unity with Tanzania hand in hand, and the PLA will work shoulder to shoulder with Tanzania People’s Defence Forces (TPDF) to safeguard our respective national security and contribute to building a world of lasting peace, universal security and common prosperity.