Xi calls for Chinas military theory to match dynamic army

first_imgFrom K J M VarmaBeijing, Mar 13 (PTI) President Xi Jinping today said China should have a military theory that is “up-to-date, pioneering and unique” to support its dynamic 2.3 million- strong armed forces, amid escalating tensions with the US over the strategic South China Sea.Greater efforts must be made to promote the innovation of Marxist military theory, Xi, also the chairman of the Central Military Commission, told a military delegation to the National Peoples Congress at its ongoing annual session.”A sound military theory is a key part of combat effectiveness. A strong army must have a sound theory as its guide,” Xi said.He ordered that China have a “military theory that is up-to-date, pioneering and unique” to support its strong and dynamic armed forces, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.He urged military academics to link theoretical research with military practice.His comments to have a strong military theory come in the backdrop of growing confrontation with the US over the disputed South China Sea where China is asserting its sovereignty.Beijings claims over almost all of South China Sea are disputed by the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan with counter-claims.China is also locked in a dispute with Japan over islands in the East China Sea.In his address today, Xi highlighted theoretical and technological innovation as the key to upgrade the countrys military and national defence.He asked the armed forces to fully implement the innovation-driven development strategy, place combat capacity at the centre of all their work, and step up theoretical and technological innovation.advertisementMilitary administration and high-calibre personnel were also identified as areas to be improved.The Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) should focus on priority areas in order to kickstart across-the-board innovation and make the military stronger, Xi said.He told PLA lawmakers that the 13th Five-Year Plan period (2016-2020) is crucial to Chinas national defence and military development, and urged the armed forces to uphold political integrity, reform and rule of law, and strengthen their military buildup and combat readiness.China this year increased its defence budget by 7.6 per cent to USD 146 billion.Xis remarks come in the wake of a major military overhaul that saw the launch of a General Command for the Army, the PLA Rocket Force and the PLA Strategic Support Force in December, and the regrouping of seven military area commands into five PLA theatre commands in February. PTI KJV SAI AKJ SAIlast_img