Chinese Leader Tells Military to 'Prepare for War'
China's Xi Jinping calls on troops to 'put all their energy on preparing for war'
China's leader Xi Jinping has called on the Chinese military to “put all (their) minds and energy on preparing for war,” according to state media reports.
President Xi, leader of the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP), gave the instruction during a visit to a military base in the southern province of Guangdong on Tuesday.
Xi told the People’s Liberation Army Marine Corps troops stationed in Chaozhou City to “maintain a state of high alert,” according to a translation of his remarks, reported by the Chinese state-run Xinhua news agency,
The news agency also reported that Xi called on the troops to ramp up training for actual combat capabilities.
“It is necessary to insist on leading training by combat, strengthening task traction, strengthening targeted and confrontational training, and beating hard and training the troops,” Xinhua wrote of Xi’s remarks.
"It is necessary to promote innovations in combat theory, training models, and task organization to improve training levels and actual combat capabilities."
The Communist leader also reportedly called on the troops to be “absolutely loyal, absolutely pure, and absolutely reliable.”
He also called on the PLA’s Marine Corps to “cultivate a fighting spirit that is not afraid of hardship and death, and bring the troops to life.”
Xi also told his troops to "focus all [your] minds and energy on preparing for war and maintain a high level of alert," reported state broadcaster CCTV, citing the leader.
The president's calls for combat readiness come as political tensions have flared between China and self-ruled Taiwan, which Beijing considers as its own.
The Communist leader has been touring the southern Chinese region since Monday.
He is taking part in celebrations to mark the 40th anniversary of the Shenzhen special economic zone today.
While visiting the marine base, Xi urged the soldiers to "speed up improving [their combat capabilities]" in order to become a "multi-functional, rapid response, all-weather and region" elite force.
Xi, who is also chairman of China's Central Military Commission, also told the troops to focus on war preparedness while remaining highly vigilant, according to CCTV.
The Chinese leader also said that the Navy shouldered the important duties of "safeguarding the country's sovereignty security and marine interests."
President Xi today gave another speech marking the establishment of the country's first economic zone in the southern city Shenzhen four decades earlier.
Carrie Lam, pro-Beijing leader of Hong Kong, attended the ceremony, after announcing on Monday that she was postponing an annual policy address scheduled for that day, as did Ho Iat Seng, the chief executive of Macau.
Xi's speech also called for further exchanges between the two territories and Taiwan, as well as overseas Chinese, and to "strengthen their sense of belonging with the motherland."
The news comes after Taiwan-China tensions spiked over the weekend when China threatened to take over Taiwan by conducting a live-fire military drill of "soldiers seizing an island."
On Sunday, Beijing also aired a purported confession from a Taiwanese businessman who is held captive by Chinese authorities on spying charges.
The Communist government has ratcheted up pressure on the democratic island since the 2016 election of President Tsai Ing-wen, who rejects its view that Taiwan is part of "one China."
Washington's increased outreach to Taiwan under President Donald Trump has become yet another flashpoint with Beijing, as the US and China clash over a range of trade and security issues, as well as the coronavirus pandemic.
Last month, China released a propaganda video showing nuclear-capable bombers carrying out a simulated attack on what appears to be the US Andersen Air Force Base on the Pacific island of Guam.
Dramatic footage with solemn music released by the Chinese military shows H-6 bombers taking off from a desert base as pilots fired off ballistic missiles at an unidentified seaside runway, triggering a massive explosion.