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In Celebration of the 93rd Anniversary of the Founding of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army

This year marks the 93rd anniversary of the founding of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA). Over the past 93 years, under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC), the heroic people’s military has come a long way through wars and hardships with great sacrifice. Marching from victory to victory, the PLA has made indelible contributions to the national indepedence, the people’s liberation and the country’s prosperity, defending China’s sovereignty, security and development interests, safeguarding world peace and promoting the development of humanity.

Since the 18th CPC National Congress, under the wise leadership of the CPC Central Committee (CPCCC) with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core, historic achievements and reforms have been made in strengthening the armed forces. Under the strategic arrangements for the development of socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era adopted by the 19th CPC National Congress, China’s defense and military development has embarked on a new journey. All ranks of the PLA thoroughly implement Xi Jinping Thought on strengthening the military, build the political loyalty of the military, strengthen it through reform, science and technology and talent development, and run it in accordance with law. China is striding forward along its own path to transform the people’s military into a world-class force in an all-round way, which will provide strategic support for the realization of the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation.

In 2020, a war without flames ravaged the world. The COVID-19 pandemic, a global crisis and daunting challenge, has been the most extensive to afflict humanity in a century. China has put the people first, as nothing is more precious than people’s lives. Facing this unknown, unexpected and devastating pandemic, the PLA resolutely delivered on the orders of the CPCCC, the CMC and President Xi, and honored the trust of the Party and the people by fighting the hard battles of epidemic prevention and control, one after another. Over 10,000 military medical staff, inside and outside Hubei province, were deployed in the fight against the epidemic. They spared no efforts to save lives and safeguard public health, and have made outstanding contribution to this all-out people’s war against COVID-19.

The virus knows no territorial boundaries. Nor is race or nationality relevant in the face of the disease. This global public health emergency is a test on both the capability to contain the outbreak and the commitment of the major militaries. The PLA leaders have communicated with defense or military leaders of more than 20 countries and international organizations including the ROK, Russia, Italy, the US and the EU through correspondence or telephone calls. Building a community with a shared future for mankind, the PLA has carried out active international cooperation with defense authorities and militaries of many nations to combat the pandemic. Efforts were made to send military medical expert teams to Pakistan, Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia, provide medical supplies to the militaries of 50 countries including Pakistan, Russia, Thailand, Ethiopia, Argentina and Belarus by military aircraft, and hold video conferences to share experience with the militaries of over 10 countries including Russia, Indonesia and South Africa. The Chinese military has contributed “China Strength” to the building of a global community of health for all.

The world under the impact of the pandemic is undergoing profound changes and facing more unstable and uncertain factors. It is the common aspiration of the people of the world to pursue peace instead of war, and cooperation instead of confrontation. China holds high the banner of peace, development and win-win cooperation, unswervingly follows the path of peaceful development, and actively promotes the building of new types of international relations and a community with a shared future for mankind. China adheres to a defensive national defense policy, never seeks hegemony, expansion or spheres of influence, and is always committed to building world peace, contributing to global development and safeguarding international order. Just as an EU leader said, China does not have military ambitions or want to use the force to participate in military conflicts. China does not present a military threat to world peace.

This year marks the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the EU. China-EU relations have gone through changes in the international landscape, kept cooperation as the mainstay and demonstrated strong vitality. There is no fundamental conflict of interest between China and the EU, with cooperation far outweighing competition and common ground far exceeding disagreement. Both sides should stay committed to the comprehensive strategic partnership, stand together on the side of historical progress and the common aspirations of the people of the world. Seizing the momentum and moving towards the same direction, China and the EU should strive to serve as two major forces to maintain global peace and stability. The Chinese military is willing to work with the defense authorities and militaries of the EU and its member states to expand and deepen exchanges and cooperation in defense policy, maritime security, seminars and training, military medicine and peacekeeping in Africa. Enhancing mutual trust through more dialogue and pursuing win-win outcomes through closer cooperation, China and the EU will develop a more stable and mature relationship in the post COVID-19 era, and provide greater stability in a complex and volatile world.

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