Senior officials of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) held press conference in Beijing on Tuesday to intoduce arrangement of the National Day military parade. Photo: He Zhuoqian/GT
Senior officials of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) on Tuesday hinted that DF-41, China's most advanced latest generation intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) might make its debut on the National Day military parade in Beijing on October 1, the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.
Addressing a press conference in the capital to discuss the arrangements for the upcoming massive military parade, a senior Chinese military officer told reporters to wait and watch for what will unfold, and stressed that the media "will not be disappointed."
"Everyone please wait and see, and I believe our journalist friends will not be disappointed," said Major General Tan Min, Executive Deputy Director of the Military Parade Joint Command Office, without explicitly confirming DF-41's debut. Tan is also Deputy Chief of Staff of the Central Theater Command of the PLA.
Arrangements for this military parade are in full swing with massive preparations underway. Giving out its details Major General Cai Zhijun, Deputy Director of the Leading Group Office of Military Parade said that the parade will feature 59 phalanxes, about 15,000 people, around 160 aircraft including 580 pieces of weaponry and equipment. The military parade will take about 80 minutes, and will be the largest in recent years, said Cai, who is also the Deputy Director General of the Operation Bureau of the Joint Staff Department, the Central Military Commission.
The number of people who participated in the military parade at the Zhurihe Combined Tactics Training Base of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region in 2017 and the Victory Day military parade in 2015 was both 12,000, so the upcoming National Day military parade will be greater than the two.
Cai added this would be the first time that PLA female soldiers who will participate in the square formation in the parade to be led by two female generals, and a square formation of the Chinese UN Peacekeeping Force will also participate in the march for the first time.
All weapons slated for display in the parade are domestically manufactured and in active service, including the ones that will make their debuts on October 1, said Major General Tan Min.
The equipment for display highlights information technology with strong command and control capability, and higher strike accuracy. They are better adaptable to the battlefield and possess greater combat effectiveness, Tan said.
Many unmanned military vehicles will make their debut at the parade, Cai noted.
Asked if the Chinese parade is "a muscle show against the US," Defense Ministry spokesperson Senior Colonel Wu Qian refuted this claims a strange logic.
If China shows weapons, it is often accused that China is doing a muscle show, and if not, Chinese military is criticized for the lack of transparency, Wu said.
"China doesn't need and has no intention to show muscle through parades," Wu added.
Wu also said 188 military attachés from 97 countries will be invited to view the parade, and no foreign military square teams will join the parade this time, and no foreign military leaders were invited to the parade.
Trucks carry Chinese intercontinental ballistic missiles. Photo: 81.cn