China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) has established a security unit, consisting of army, navy and air force personnel, for the Beijing Olympic Games, a senior PLA officer said on Thursday.
A command center had been organized and the unit had been selected, director of the military bureau of the Beijing Olympic Games security work command center Tian Yixiang said, adding the training program had been completed.
The PLA security unit would mainly deal with non-traditional threats during the games, particularly biochemical and nuclear terror attacks, Tian told 65 defence attaches from 54 foreign embassies to China who attended a briefing on PLA security preparations for the Olympics.
Under the comprehensive security plan of the Beijing Olympics, the PLA unit would be responsible for air protection of all arenas, and maritime safety of coastal venues.
The unit would help the police and armed police forces prevent and deal with terror attacks as well as rescue operations in disaster or accident situations.
Many PLA forces would remain on alert in the air or at sea to ensure the safety of the Beijing Olympics, Tian said. It would also provide security for the equestrian arena in Hong Kong if the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government requested.
"It is international practice for military forces to participate in security for Olympic Games," Tian said. "The PLA has completed emergency plans for non-traditional threats.
"The equipment and defence abilities of the military security unit for the Beijing Olympics will exceed those in the Athens Games," Tian said.
The military bureau is the top command organ in charge of security work of the PLA and it is subject to both the Beijing Olympic Games security work command center and the Headquarters of the General Staff of the PLA.