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China displays military might on 60th National Day parade

Conventional missiles on display at the Chinese National Day parade in Beijing on Thursday. Image credit: Xinuha

BEIJING (BNS): In a grand display of its military prowess, China on Thursday celebrated its 60th National Day with the country’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) showcasing a wide array of missiles, artillery and other sophisticated weapons deployed in the army, navy and air force.

From the HQ-9 and HQ-12 surface-to-air missiles (SAM) used by the country’s land forces to the navy's newly equipped ship borne air defense missiles, anti-ship missiles and shore-to-ship missiles – the Communist giant showed to the world its precision striking capabilities in the heart of Beijing.

The PLA also unveiled its new intercontinental ballistic missiles during the parade.

Addressing the nation on the occasion, President Hu Jintao said, “We have triumphed over all sorts of difficulties and setbacks and risks to gain the great achievements evident to the world.”

Amid applause and exclamations driven by patriotic pride from the audience, the PLA's air defense missiles from the Nanjing Military Area Command rumbled past the Tian'anmen Square, official news agency Xinuha reported.

“You can feel our country's power from the parade,” said a major from the PLA's Beijing Military Area Command. “Compared with the last military parade ten years ago, this year's show is much more spectacular and more high-tech,” he added.

PLA, world’s largest military, also rolled out the HQ-9and HQ-12 SAMs deployed in its Beijing Military Area Command air forces. Both the missiles are newly developed medium- and long-range air defense systems capable of hitting targets at medium and high altitudes.

Besides missiles, the military parade also featured for the first time three types of mobile radars and a formation of the army's communication units.

The Red Army also exhibited its anti-aircraft artillery systems – a combination of anti-aircraft guns and air defense missiles. They included – Type 05 tracked self-propelled gun-howitzers – the latest and most sophisticated artillery pieces in the PLA’s arsenal, Type 07 tracked self-propelled howitzers, wheeled self-propelled mortar howitzers and the 100mm self-propelled assault guns.

Also on display were the country’s newest rocket launchers and heavy anti-tank missile systems.

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