China on Thursday held an extravagant parade in capital Beijing to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the end of the Second World War, showcasing its military might on an unprecedented scale….reports Asian Lite News
Presiding over the extravaganza, President Xi Jinping said that China will “not seek hegemony” and China’s military – the largest in the world – would be reduced by 300,000 troops, Xinhua news agency reported.
“We Chinese love peace. No matter how much stronger it may become, China will never seek hegemony or expansion,” he said.
“It will never inflict its past suffering on any other nation”
“The Chinese army is the people’s army. All its officers, men and women must bear in mind their responsibility of serving the people whole-heartedly,” he added.
Hundreds of ballistic missiles, tanks, amphibious assault vehicles, drones and other military equipment were paraded past the gathered leaders, veterans and guests.
To start the celebrations, some 200 fighter jets took to the skies and 70,000 doves and balloons were released above Tiananmen Square, CNN reported.
Among the 12,000 troops were contingents from Russia, Pakistan and 15 other countries.
It was the first Chinese military parade marking any anniversary of the war and the first with foreign military participation.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, South Korean President Park Geun-hye, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon, Pakistan President Mamnoon Hussain, former British prime minister Tony Blair and former German chancellor Gerhard Schroede also attended the parade.
Some 40,000 people were present in Tiananmen Square, which could be the largest live audience to watch any parade in China.