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China names former navy commander Dong Jun as new defense minister

By Jiang Chenglong | | Updated: 2023-12-29 18:47
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In a decision made on Friday, the Standing Committee of the 14th National People's Congress, China's top legislature, appointed Dong Jun as the country's new Minister of National Defense.

Dong, formerly the commander of the Chinese navy, received the promotion to the rank of general in September 2021, making him one of the highest-ranking officers in active service. His election to the Communist Party of China Central Committee occurred during the 20th National Congress in October 2022.

As the former commander of the Navy, Dong engaged in various military diplomatic activities. Notably, in March of last year, he conducted a video call with Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Thai Navy, Somprasong Nilsamai, discussing cooperation and exchanges between the two navies.

Additionally, Dong participated in a video call in November 2021 between then State Councilor and Defense Minister Wei Fenghe and Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, where Dong and his Rusian counterpart summarized China-Russia maritime joint patrols in 2021.

Prior to assuming a leadership role in the People's Liberation Army Navy, Dong also oversaw joint military exercises between Chinese and foreign forces on the front line. In early 2020, while serving as the deputy commander of the PLA's Southern Theater Command, Dong acted as the general director of the Chinese side of the Sea Guardians-2020 joint naval drill between China and Pakistan, according to the PLA Daily, the Chinese military's flagship media outlet.

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