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Home > Embassy News > 2016
Remarks by H.E. Ambassador Liu Xiaoming at the Reception Marking the 89th Anniversary of the People's Liberation Army
Chinese Embassy, 1 August 2016
2016/08/01

General Gordon,

Generals, Admirals and Military Attachés,

Ladies and Gentlemen:

A very warm welcome to the Chinese Embassy!

It is a great pleasure to have you all with us to celebrate the 89th anniversary of the Chinese People's Liberation Army.

The PLA is an army of the people, by the people and for the people. For the great renewal of the Chinese nation, the PLA is the solid cornerstone. Together with the Chinese people, the PLA, led by the Communist Party of China, have overcome many challenges in the past 89 years, and made tremendous contribution to China's independence, unity and modernisation.

The PLA is also a staunch force for world peace and development. Chinese military personnel have been actively engaged in many aspects of international cooperation. These include:

· UN peacekeeping missions.

· Anti-terrorism efforts.

· And humanitarian relief operations.

They and their foreign counterparts have fought shoulder to shoulder. The outcome has been an advance in peace and hope around the globe.

In this process, the PLA have also made sacrifices. Since the beginning of this year, three Chinese peacekeepers have sacrificed their lives and nine have been injured. Despite these severe losses and sorrows, the Chinese armed forces remain undaunted. There is no question about the fortitude of their commitment to continue to uphold world peace.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

China is committed to the path of peaceful development. China is committed to a defense strategy that is defensive in nature. The development of China's defense and military capability is not targeted at any country. China will not pose any threat to other countries. Nor will China exceed the need of ensuring China's own national security.

This has been China's policy over many years. This will continue to be China's policy in the future.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

At present, China is deepening reforms of its national defence and military system:

· The goal is to build a modern military force with Chinese features. Such a military force will need an enhanced battlefield command system and increased combat effectiveness.

· It will need to better fulfill the responsibilities of safeguarding China's sovereignty, territorial integrity, development interests and maritime interests.

· And it will need to improve responsiveness to challenges and threats and to maintain regional stability and global peace.

At present, China-UK relations are at an important historical juncture:

Next year will mark the 45th anniversary of the establishment of ambassadorial diplomatic relations between our two countries. The journey over the past four decades and more highlights the importance of shared commitments to mutual respect, equality and taking into account each other's core interests and major concerns. These commitments have served as the cornerstone of China-UK bilateral relations. They are the basis for sustained growth and improvement of our relationship. What China and the UK have achieved in recent years are proof enough that these commitments are crucial as we carry on to further advance our relations.

We should bear in mind our historical experience and lessons, and value the current hard-won momentum of China-UK relations. We should bear in mind our responsibilities and the fundamental interests of our two peoples. We should work together to achieve win-win results not only for China and Britain but countries and regions beyond. This is the way to ensure that the growth of our relations will always benefit our two peoples. This is the way for both China and the UK to contribute our part to world peace and prosperity.

Our military-to-military ties are an important part of our bilateral relations. We are pleased that recent years have witnessed stronger cooperation and deeper mutual trust between our militaries. Since early this year, there have been frequent reciprocal visits by high ranking military officers. There have been a number of exchanges that were carried out across services, at various levels and in multiple fields.

These achievements give us every reason to believe in a brighter future for China-UK military-to-military ties:

· We look forward to greater concerted efforts from both sides to enhance high-level contacts.

· To deepen communications between our troops.

· And to make new breakthroughs in our cooperation.

Now, I invite you to join me in a toast:

· To the 89th anniversary of the Chinese People's Liberation Army.

· To the further progress of China-UK relations and military-to-military ties.

· And to the good health of all present tonight!

Cheers!

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