Paratroopers bear PLA's new automatic rifles 2009-10-01 10:49:40   Print

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- Holding newly equipped Type 03 automatic rifles, the PLA's airborne corps soldiers in their featured sky gray camouflage uniforms arrived.


 Backgrounder: Arms of services in military parade

 Backgrounder: New faces in National Day military parade

 Backgrounder: Weapons paraded all Chinese-made

    The Type 03 automatic rifle is the latest member of the Chinese People's Liberation Army's Type 95 rifle series which adopt 5.8-mmcaliber combining the advantages of both Russian-made AK-74 and U.S.-made M-16 small-caliber rifles.

    The paratroopers on the parade also become the first official users of the new firearm as the rifle's unique foldable gunstocks can be seen in front of the soldier's chest.

    Type 03 automatic rifle was initiated as a backup plan just after the Type 95 rifle, which has been widely adopted to replace the Type 81 rifles, became the PLA's standard equipment.

    "The Type 95 rifle has a world popular Bullpup design, but many troops complained that their soldiers were not accustomed to the fashionable rifles without gunstocks," said Ma Shizeng, a retired light firearm expert.

    The equipment of Type 95 series including Type 03 rifle among most of the PLA's troops to replace Type 81 series also embodies that the PLA's individual weapon has been upgraded from imitations of Russian models to independent designing, said Ma.

    Different from the caliber of both Russian and NATO rifles, the PLA's own rifle criterion might be a typical footnote of the defensive nature of China's military development, said Duo Yingxian, an academician of Chinese Academy of Engineering and chief designer of Type 95 rifle series.

    "If invading enemies captured the PLA's rifles in China, they could not fire them with foreign bullets," Duo said.

    Bearing glorious battle histories in the Korean War and engagement in disaster relief as well as joint military exercises with foreign armies, the paratroopers first appeared on the National Day parade in 1954.

    During the PLA's desperate rescue efforts two days after the deadly Wenchuan earthquake last May, 15 paratroopers from this airborne corps managed a high-altitude jump at about 5,000 meters above sea level to become the first rescuers arrived near the epicenter.

Military reserves marching past Tian'anmen Rostrum

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) - A formation of Chinese military reserves, with bayonet fixed, marched past the Tian'anmen Rostrum in the center of Beijing on Thursday.

    Members of the group are selected from a reserve division in Beijing and include civil servants, company officials, workers, college students and retired servicemen, Bai Zhihong, head of the formation, said before the parade. Full story

China's armored vehicles roll into Tian'anmen Square

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- Fifteen formations of armored vehicles from the People's Liberation Army (PLA) and the People's Armed Police Force (PAPF) rumbled past Beijing's Tian'anmen Square Thursday.

    The armored vehicle show was the biggest and most varied in the history of the National Day military parades since Oct. 1, 1949, when the People's Republic of China (PRC) was founded. Full story

First three-service women formation debuts in military parade

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) - A military formation, consisting of women soldiers from the land, naval and air forces, made its debut in the National Day military parade in Beijing on Thursday.

    The formation had 378 soldiers, 26 more than other groups and also the largest in the world's modern military parade history. Full story

PLA to intensify aeronautic courses to cultivate information-savvy pilots

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- Wearing white helmets and blue flying uniforms, the pilot trainees goose-stepped toward the center stage of China's National Day military parade.

    The 352 pilot trainees, 25 in each of 14 rows and two vanguards, were selected from students of the People's Liberation Army (PLA)'s Aviation University of Air Force based in Changchun, capital of northeast China's Jilin Province. Full story

Snapshot: Naval forces in National Day parade

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- Sailors and marines in the National Day parade Thursday impressed the audience on Tian'anmen Square and nationwide with the country's growing ability to guard its coast and territorial waters.

    Formations of cadets, sailors and marines represented the progress the country had made in building a multi-dimensional naval defense capable of diversified missions. Full story

March-past showcases changes of PLA

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- China on Thursday staged a spectacular march-past in front of Tian'anmen, or the Gate of Heavenly Peace, in downtown Beijing, to mark the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic.

    Thousands of crisp-uniformed Chinese servicemen and women, in 14 phalanxes, marched past the Tian'anmen Rostrum, where Chairman Mao Zedong proclaimed the founding of New China. Full story

Chinese President orders armed forces to make new contributions to world peace

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Hu Jintao on Thursday called on the People's Liberation Army (PLA) and the People's Armed Police Force (PAPF) to make new contributions to safeguarding national sovereignty, security and territorial integrity, as well as to maintaining world peace. Full story

Biggest, best military band of National Day parade puts on show

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- A 1,300-member military band, which is dubbed by its conductor as "the biggest and best" band in China, is scheduled to present a non-stop two-hour show Thursday as a grand military parade and a civilian pageant proceed. Full story

China's army phalanxes march through Tian'anmen Square

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- The special operations forces of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) made their first public appearance Thursday in the National Day parade at Tian'anmen Square.

    The soldiers were holding silenced submachine guns. Full story

Army special forces debut at National Day parade

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- The special operations forces of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) made their first public appearance Thursday in the National Day military parade on Tian'anmen Square.

    The soldiers, in brown camouflage uniforms, were holding silenced submachine guns. Full story

PLA Guard of Honor heralds military review

    BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) - China's military parade reached a climax as a formation of Guard of Honor of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) three services marched past Tian'anmen in the center of Beijing.

    The tall and handsome soldiers, dressed in green, white and blue ceremonial PLA uniforms, marched past Tian'anmen in swift and impeccable goosesteps, leaving spectators intoxicated in admiration. Full story

Editor: Wang Hongjiang
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