02 August 2017
Chinese President Xi Jinping has emphasised China’s peaceful intentions, but also made it clear that the emerging superpower will not brook any threat to its territorial integrity, whether from the outside or within.
Mr Xi, who heads the Central Military Commission that oversees the PLA, stressed the need to build a strong military at a time when China’s rise has increased its overseas interests.
Some analysts, like Associate Professor Li Mingjiang of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, believe this is aimed at countries with which China has territorial disputes, including India, Japan as well as several countries in South-east Asia.
Yesterday, Mr Xi also stressed the leadership of the CCP over the PLA. While this is not unusual, the emphasis on it was stronger than usual.
Prof Li said the emphasis on the party’s leadership over the military shows that the CCP’s leaders believe there is some room for the military to provide stronger support to the political leadership.
Mr Xi’s speeches over the past few days and at the activities to commemorate the PLA’s 90th anniversary, including a military parade in the country’s largest military base Zhurihe, had a clear message, said Prof Li.
It was that the Chinese people “should be proud now that their country is becoming stronger… and have confidence in China’s future and China’s political leadership”.
IDSS / Online / Print
Last updated on 11/08/2017