President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe and President Hu Jintao of the People's Republic of China during a trip to that socialist nation. Zimbabwe has developed closer ties with the PRC over the decades., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Chinese army hails ties with ZDF
Thursday, 02 August 2012 00:00
THE People’s Liberation Army of China has hailed its ties with the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, which date back to the days of the country’s liberation struggle.
Commemorating the 85th anniversary of the founding of the PLA, defence attache at the Chinese Embassy in Harare, Senior Colonel Ju Hungbin said PLA and ZDF had worked together for a long time.
“Despite the long distance between China and Zimbabwe, recent years have witnessed fast growing co-operation between PLA and ZDF, whose friendship dates back to the 1960s, when you were engaged in your righteous liberation struggle.
“The high level of exchange visits are frequent and fruitful. The visit in succession by Commander of the Air Force, Air Chief Marshal Xu Qiliang and Deputy Chief of General Political Department Admiral Tong
Shiping following General (Constantine) Chiwenga’s visit to China simply demonstrates how close we are. Just a few days ago, we received a delegation of commanders of brigades and air force bases,” he said.
Snr Col Ju said illegal sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe by the West had crippled ZDF’s operations.
He said the PLA had, however, continued to assist the ZDF.
“At present, PLA is doing its best to help the ZDF. Because of the illegal sanctions, ZDF is now facing challenges and PLA has provided assistance in the field, in health, office equipment and personnel training.”
Snr Col Ju said every year the ZDF sent almost 100 officers to China for training.
He said China contributed much to the independence of Zimbabwe and since then relations between the two countries blossomed.
“At independence, the two countries established diplomatic relations. As China, we are pleased with the independence of Zimbabwe because China made its contribution to the achievement,” he said.
Turning to the PLA’s 85th anniversary, Snr Col Ju said PLA was founded on August 1, 1927.
He said since then, the PLA — under the leadership of the Communist party — had worked hard to defend the independence of China.
“Since then, the PLA has undertaken the sacred duty of safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity and made great contributions to national development, emergency rescue and disaster relief,” he said.
Snr Col Ju said China had pledged to pursue a road of peaceful development and working with other nations.
He said China remained committed to the policy of no first use of nuclear weapons at any time and under any circumstances.