–India, Pakistan to be part of joint drill under SCO for the first time on Aug 22
BEIJING: The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) will hold the Peace Mission 2018 joint military drill from August 22 to 29 in Comprehensive Training Field in Chebarkul, Chelyabinsk, Russia.
The theme of the drill is “Preparation and Cooperation on Counter-terrorism Among SCO Member States’ Militaries”.
The participating countries will include Pakistan and India, first time both will be the part of joint drill, under the SCO arrangements, it was announced here by a spokesman of the Chinese Defence Ministry, Senior Colonel Ren Guoqiang.
The main subjects include field reconnaissance, joint fire strike, counter-terrorism operations in residential settlements. The PLA will send 743 officers and men to participate.
This is a routine military drill within the framework of the SCO, which has been playing a positive role in deepening defense and security cooperation among member states, enhancing capacity in tackling new threats and challenges and also safeguarding regional peace and stability.
To another question, the spokesman stressed that Taiwan is an integral part of China. He said, “We firmly oppose any official contacts and military exchanges in any form between any country and Taiwan.”
“This position is clear and consistent. There is no way out only relying on other countries and any attempt to make use of Taiwan to contain China is doomed to failure.”
“We urge the US side to keep its commitment to One-China Policy and relevant propositions in the three joint communiqués between China and US and handle Taiwan-related issues properly and cautiously so as not to harm the state-to-state and the mil-to-mil relationship between China and the US and the cross-strait peace and stability,” he added.
The spokesman announced that the “International Army Games -2018” will begin on July 28. This is the fifth year for the Chinese military to participate in the games and the second year to host the games.
There are many highlights in this year’s games compared to those in previous years:
First, many competitions will be joined or hosted by the Chinese military. The Chinese military will host and participate in 4 competitions in China, and also participate in 18 competitions in Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus. So, the Chinese military will join and host a total of 22 competitions.
Second, many foreign teams will participate in the competitions hosted in China. Teams from 10 countries such as Russia, Belarus and Pakistan, and an observing delegation from Armenia, have arrived at Korla competition area in Xinjiang and Quanzhou competition area in Fujian. All the preparation work has been completed.
Third, the Chinese military will use a lot of equipment from foreign militaries. Now, 18 teams from the Chinese PLA Army and Air Force have all arrived at the competition areas abroad. The PLA Army teams will participate in 16 competitions abroad. They will use their own equipment in nine competitions and use foreign militaries’ equipment in seven competitions.
Forth, many types of aircraft of the PLA Air Force will participate. The Chinese PLA Air Force will send 5 types of aircraft to participate in the competitions abroad, including H-6K, J-10A, FB-7A, IL-76, and Y-9, among which, it will be the first time for H-6K and Y-9 to participate in competitions abroad.
Fifth, it is the first time for Chinese military academies to send their own teams to participate. The two NCO schools of the PLA Army Armour Academy and the PLA Army Engineering University will both send respective teams to participate in the games for the first time.
He concluded, “We believe that the Chinese military will host the games with a high standard, participate in the games at a high level, compete with and learn from other militaries on the international military arena, and demonstrate the Chinese military’s sound image as a mighty and civilised force.”