China Highlighting Peace, Cooperation with Joint Military Drills with Asian Countries

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Soldiers take part in the “Dragon Gold 2020” joint drill in Cambodia’s southwestern Kampot province, March 26, 2020. Cambodia and China launched the fourth joint drill on counter-terrorism and humanitarian rescue at the Techo Sen Chumkiri live-fire field in Cambodia’s southwestern Kampot province on March 15. The exercise dubbed “Dragon Gold 2020” will last till April 1. (Xinhua)
Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) troops have set out for a joint exercise with Laos to be held later this week, marking yet another Chinese military interaction with Asian countries since the past month.

Such joint drills contribute to military exchanges and the safeguarding of regional peace and stability, experts said on Sunday.

Over 200 personnel with more than 300 sets of multiple types of weapons and equipment attached to a combined arms brigade of the 75th Group Army under the PLA Southern Theater Command set out from Southwest China’s Yunnan Province via railway transportation to participate in the China-Laos Friendship Shield-2023 joint military exercise after a ceremony on Thursday, the PLA Daily reported on Saturday.

The joint drills, to be held in Laos from Tuesday to May 28, involve positional assault operations in mountainous and forest terrains under a background of cracking down on cross-border armed criminal organizations, the PLA Daily reported, noting that the event will include mixed training, comprehensive drills, cultural exchanges and humanitarian aid.

Over the past month, the PLA has carried out multiple joint military drills with Asian countries.

Recently, a Chinese Navy flotilla consisting of a frigate and a minesweeper hunter participated in the China-Singapore Exercise Maritime Cooperation 2023 in waters off Singapore, practicing anti-sea mining, minefield transit guidance, maritime replenishment, live-fire naval artillery shooting, joint search and rescue as well as medical aid missions with Singaporean vessels, the PLA Daily reported last week.

From April 11 to 13, the coast guards of China and Vietnam conducted the first joint patrol in 2023 in the Beibu Gulf, marking the 25th joint patrol conducted by the maritime law enforcement departments of China and Vietnam since 2006, the Xinhua News Agency reported at the time.

In early April, China and Cambodia wrapped up the Golden Dragon-2023 joint exercise, which practiced providing security for important events and humanitarian aid, including a comprehensive live-fire phase dealing with a mock terror attack on a major international event.

These drills are of significance in enhancing exchanges, cooperation and mutual trust among Chinese and the Asian countries’ militaries, and they contribute to the safeguarding of regional peace and stability, experts said.

The US and the Philippines recently held the largest-ever Balikatan joint exercise in the South China Sea, a move experts said was aimed at containing China and destabilizing the situation in the region. The Philippines also recently provided four additional military bases for US use.

Fu Qianshao, a Chinese military expert, told the Global Times that China is expected to continue to bolster its ties with countries in the region to build a peaceful and stable environment in Southeast Asia, at a time when the US has been stirring up troubles in the region.

Source: Global Times