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Military playing catch-up in modernization (2)
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08:11, September 22, 2009

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China has to continue with its development of increasingly sophisticated weapons to provide solid material and technological support to the army's modernization drive, Liang said.

His words came just days before China's biggest military parade in a decade in Beijing, which will showcase much of the advance weaponry October 1 in celebration of the nation's 60th anniversary.

Chinese analysts did not hesitate to applaud the development of China's weapons system, though some pointed out that Western powers might not be happy to see that happen.

"A Chinese weaponry system, which is practical, cheap and suitable for defense on home soil, will eventually come into being," Li Daguang, a senior military expert at the PLA University of National Defense, told the Global Times.

"The international environment happens to be unhelpful for China's weapon development," he said, citing weapons embargos against China byEuroupean Union and the US.

He also criticized foreign media for its reporting on China's military progress.

"They are quick to make noise whenever China reports progress in its weaponry development," he said. "They exaggerate and politicize the issue."

Last week, China's Ministry of National Defense reiterated that the country's military development is "always a positive factor for both regional and global peace and stability," in response to Washington's renewed comments that China's increasingly advanced weaponry could undermine US military power in the Pacific.

"Liang's words reflect the rapid development of China's military strength, especially in the last decade," said Yang Chengjun, a senior military strategist of missile studies. "But compared with developed countries, China still has a long way to go to defend and expand national interests efficiently."

Qiu Wei contributed to this story

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