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Xi urges military to focus on improving capabilities

By ZHAO LEI and CAO DESHENG | China Daily | Updated: 2020-01-21 02:43
President Xi Jinping, who is also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, talks on Sunday with soldiers stationed in Yunnan province during an inspection tour ahead of Lunar New Year. LI GANG / XINHUA

President Xi Jinping urged the Chinese military on Monday to strive this year to realize its goals and missions given by the Communist Party of China and the Chinese people.

"We are determined to build a moderately prosperous society and eradicate absolute poverty before the end of this year. We also aim to achieve the goals set for our national defense system and the People's Liberation Army this year. There are numerous tough tasks for us to do," said Xi, who also is general secretary of the CPC Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission.

"I hope you stick to the Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, uphold the Party's thought on strengthening the military, and implement military strategies in the new era. … You must enhance the sense of mission, be focused on improving your capabilities, make sure all of your jobs are fully done, and unswervingly complete the goals set by the Party and the people."

The president made the remarks on Monday in Kunming, capital of southwestern China's Yunnan province, as he met with officers from military units in the province.

He said troops in Yunnan performed well in terms of implementing the instructions from the CPC Central Committee and the Central Military Commission, and he praised them for steadily moving forward toward their goals and completing their tasks with outstanding results.

The troops made remarkable contributions to the protection of sovereignty, national security and development interests as well as to economic and social development in Yunnan, according to Xi.

When addressing the officers during the meeting, Xi offered his best wishes for the coming Spring Festival to all members of the PLA, the People's Armed Police Force, the reserve forces and the militia.

On Sunday, Xi inspected a border defense battalion in Yunnan. He checked the troops' living conditions and chatted with soldiers.

Video clips broadcast by China Central Television showed that Xi visited a squad's dorm, the battalion's medical room and its kitchen. He checked the cooked meals and examined the freshness of vegetables.

During the tour, the president also held a teleconference with soldiers from a landmine clearance unit and a border patrol squad, and encouraged them to honor their duties.

Also on Sunday, the president visited a village of the Wa ethnic group in Tengchong, a city in Yunnan.

He stressed the need to promote rural vitalization and address problems including the imbalance between urban and rural development after China constructs a moderately prosperous society.

Xi told the villagers that efforts should be made to develop rural industries, improve the rural economy, increase incomes and improve people's livelihoods.

He also extended Lunar New Year greetings to the villagers, and beat a wooden drum three times, in accordance with local customs, to wish favorable weather for bumper harvests, peace for the country and the people, and peace for the whole world.

While visiting the old town of Heshun, a popular tourist destination in Tengchong, Xi exchanged greetings with tourists.

A video clip on the internet showed that a tourist asked the president where was his wife Peng Liyuan.

"(She) didn't come," Xi replied with a smile. "Just busy preparing for the New Year at home like everyone else."

In Heshun, Xi also visited a local library and museum on the ancient Southern Silk Road as well as the memorial hall of Ai Siqi, a Chinese philosopher who made contributions to promoting the Party's theories, popularizing Marxism in China and adapting it with Chinese characteristics.

On Monday, Xi visited a wetland near Dianchi Lake in Kunming and learned of the efforts to protect the environment of the lake.

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