President Xi Jinping will inspect a military parade at China’s biggest base at Zhurihe in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region on Sunday as the country gets set to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the world’s largest 2.3 million-strong People’s Liberation Army.
Xi, 64, who is also head of the military and the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC), will inspect the troops and also deliver an important speech. The event will be broadcast live by state-run TV and Radio, official Xinhua news agency reported.
The PLA was founded on August 1, 1927 when the ruling CPC under the leadership of Mao Zedong carried on with his national liberation movement. It is one of the rare national armies which still continues to function under the leadership of the CPC and not the Chinese government.
Xi heads the Central Military Commission (CMC), which holds the overall command of the PLA. Earlier, the Hong Kong-based ‘South China Morning Post’ reported that PLA was planning to hold the biggest drills at the Inner Magnolia base which is also regarded as China’s biggest military base. The Xinhua report, however, did not refer to any such plans.
This year’s August 1 anniversary will be held amid an over a month long standoff with India at Doklam in Sikkim section. Besides Doklam, China is also concerned by the situation in North Korea and the deployment of Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) missile by the US in South Korea much to the opposition of the Beijing.
The biggest military parade in China’s modern history was held in Beijing on September 3, 2015 to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of the World War II. More than 10,000 servicemen and servicewomen marched down Changan Avenue past Tiananmen Square, along with about 500 military vehicles, as nearly 200 PLA aircraft flew overhead.