China to invite foreign militaries to WWII parade

World Today

Infantry soldiers receive inspection in a parade of the celebrations for the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, on Chang’an Street in central Beijing, capital of China, Oct. 1, 2009. (Xinhua Photo)

China will invite militaries of relevant countries to participate in a parade later this year, a defense ministry spokesman said on Thursday.

“As this year is the 70th anniversary of the victory of World War II and China’s victory in the Chinese People’s War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression, China will hold a military parade in Beijing in September this year,” spokesman Geng Yansheng said at a monthly press briefing.

Geng said the Chinese military will, in accordance with international norms, send invitations to the militaries of countries that fought in the Anti-Japanese war and and on the anti-Fascist battlefield in the eastern theater, as well as other related countries.

Geng said the parade aimed not to celebrate the victory, but to memorialize victims of the conflict, cherish martyrs, treasure peace and usher in the future.

He did not elaborate on which countries will be invited or on what form the parade will take.

“In the past, state-level military parades have been held in Tiananmen Square. At present I have not heard any news that it will be held elsewhere,” Geng said, referring to the landmark at the heart of the Chinese capital.

Chinese soldiers will attend a parade in Russia in May to mark the end of the World War II in Europe, he added.

China’s military parade will be President Xi Jinping’s first since he took over as Communist Party and military chief in late 2012 and as state president in early 2013.

Story by China Daily using agencies.