China's Xi urges military to deepen war, combat planning
China wants to boost its chances of winning in actual warfare.
Chinese President Xi Jinping reiterated on Thursday his call to soldiers to protect China's sovereignty and territory, telling them to strengthen war and combat planning to boost their chances of winning in actual warfare, according to state-run Xinhua news agency.
In remarks to troops, while on an inspection tour of the Eastern Theater Command, and after affirming the significant contributions the command has made since its founding in safeguarding China's territorial sovereignty, maritime rights, and interests, as well as national unity, Xi stressed that the world has entered a new era of chaos and change and that China's security situation has grown more uncertain and unstable, Xinhua reported.
He called for vigilance against potential dangers and all-out efforts to fulfill the duty of combat tasked with theater commands.
Earlier this year, Xi urged China to strengthen its ability to protect national security by transforming its military into a "Great Wall of Steel" in remarks made shortly after earning a record-breaking third term as president.
Regarding developments with Taiwan, Xi said at that time he would try to resolve the problem but warned to "resolutely oppose external interference and Taiwan independence separatist activities."
China has urged US diplomats specifically not to interact with Taiwanese leaders because it sees this as supporting Taiwan's ambition to be seen as independent from China.
China has organized war games near the island and carried out drills and live firing in the area ever since former US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan in August of last year.
China has never denied using force to seize control of Taiwan. Beijing now has the right to use military force against Taiwan if it secedes or appears to be preparing to do so, thanks to a law passed in 2005.
As US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen arrived in Beijing for discussions aimed at reducing tensions between the US and China, Xi called for an increase in military readiness.
Xi told the Eastern Theater Command, "We must persist in thinking and handling military issues from a political perspective, dare to fight, be good at fighting, and resolutely defend our national sovereignty, security, and development interests."
Xi visited the Guangdong-based Southern Theater Command in April, which has jurisdiction over the South China Sea, a large portion of which Beijing claims.
Similar to how the Chinese navy stepped up its assertiveness with training missions and drills to challenge the growing US maritime presence in the area, he emphasized the importance of intensifying military training and preparation.