Beijing : China will display a range of missiles during the massive military parade commemorating the end of World War II here on September 3, where the People’s Liberation Army would flaunt latest military gears, not seen in public before.
The missiles, to be displayed by Second Artillery Forces, country’s strategic missile force, include long-range, intermediate-range and short-range missiles as well as conventional and nuclear missiles, state-run Xinhua news agency quoted officials as
“The scale and number of the missiles will surpass any previous outing,” the official said without divulging details. The Army, Navy, Air Force, Second Artillery Force and Armed Police will debut new weapons and equipment, Qu Rui, Deputy Director of the Office of the Parade Leading Team and Deputy Chief of the Operations Department of the General Staff Headquarters told media here.
At least 84 per cent of the weapons to be demonstrated at the parade has never been seen in public so far, Qu said, adding that all of the armaments are indigenously made. Last year, China revealed its new generation of intercontinental ballistic missiles, the Dongfeng-41 missile with a range of 12,000 kms, which according to Jane’s Defence weekly is one of the longest range missiles in the world.
“Our missile weaponry has seen great advances in terms of firing range, strike methods, accuracy and mobility,” the official said. Qu said a total of 12,000 troops, 500 pieces of equipment, and nearly 200 aircraft will take in the parade being held on September 3 to mark the 70th anniversary of its victory against Japanese forces in WWII.
The 2.3 million-strong People’s Liberation Army is the world’s largest standing army.
With $145 billion annual budget, the second highest, it has developed a range of missiles, aircraft and commissioned its aircraft carrier in recent years as China pursued more aggressive strategy with regard to its disputes with neighbours, mainly maritime disputes in the South China Sea, and with Japan.
K J M Varma
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