press trust of india
Beijing, Jan 12: All wings of the Chinese military have stepped up drills at home and abroad focusing their training on the plateau region post Doklam, the official media of that force reported Friday.
The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has been executing military training instructions issued by President Xi Jinping January 3 by conducting drills at home and abroad involving its ground forces, Navy, Air Force, rocket (missile) force and armed police, it said.
The People’s Liberation Army’s official media cautioned the troops Thursday of imminent threats and to avoid complacency. The drills included ones conducted by the Chinese navy at Djibouti base in the Indian Ocean, which was officially stated to be a logistics base.
The PLA Daily, official mouthpiece of the 2.3 million strong military, said China’s most advanced military aircraft including the J-20 stealth fighter jet, the Y-20 transport aircraft, the H-6k bomber, and the J-16, J-11B J-10C fighter jets have all conducted training exercises since the beginning of 2018.
The J-20 is conducting air combat training with other fighter planes including the J-16. The J-20 is also practising beyond-visual-range air combat, and other aircraft, including the Y-20 and the J-10C, are training at unspecified airports on a “plateau region” in order to improve their capability in long-range military transport and air combat, the PLA Daily reported.
The “plateau region” refers to the Tibetan plateau which covered a long Line of Actual Control (LAC) between India and China.
“India’s ground force has some advantages in quantity in the border areas, so if conflict erupts, China’s air force needs to seize domination of the skies and immediately create an overwhelming advantage for China,” a retired PLA officer who used to serve in the air force and asked not to be identified, was quoted as saying by the ‘Global Times’.
“So, increasing military training in the plateau region is highly necessary,” he said.
The drills assumed significance as potential military conflicts in plateau regions have been on the rise since the border friction with India last year, the official said.
China and India were engaged in a 73-day tense standoff at Doklam in the Sikkim sector which ended on August 28.
The report highlighted a potential military conflict between India and China against the backdrop of hectic parleys between the two countries to improve relations.
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