China marks People's Liberation Army's 90th anniversary
Beijing: China on Tuesday marked the 90th anniversary of the People's Liberation Army's (PLA) founding with a grand rally held at the Great Hall of the People here.
President Xi Jinping while addressing the ceremony said the PLA is moving rapidly toward "strong" informationized armed forces, reports Xinhua news agency.
Xi, who is also the general secretary of the Communist Party of China'S (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, said the PLA has transformed from "millet plus rifles" single-service force to one that has fully-fledged services.
He reaffirmed the CPC's absolute leadership over the PLA.
"To build a strong military, (we) must unswervingly adhere to the Party's absolute leadership over the armed forces, and make sure that the people's army always follow the Party," Xi told the crowd.
"The Chinese people love peace. We will never seek aggression or expansion, but we have the confidence to defeat all invasions. We will never allow any people, organisation or political party to split any part of Chinese territory out of the country at any time, in any form.
"No one should expect us to swallow the bitter fruit that is harmful to our sovereignty, security or development interests," he added.
Xi called for a new generation of "capable, brave and virtuous" army "with souls" in order to build a stronger military.
Calling political work the "lifeline" of the PLA, Xi said troops must have ironclad faith, beliefs, disciplines and responsibilities, and retain their nature and tenet as the people's army.
The PLA was founded on August 1, 1927, during the Nanchang uprising against then-ruling Kuomintang party.
The later civil war resulted in founding the People's Republic of China in the mainland China on October 1, 1949.