China will display its nuclear powered submarines for the first time in history during a fleet parade to mark the 60th anniversary of the People's Liberation Army Navy, a senior navy officer said in Qingdao Monday.
Ding Yiping, deputy commander of the PLA Navy, made the remarks during an exclusive interview with Xinhua, but did not disclose any further details about the submarines.
"It is not a secret that China has nuclear submarines, which are key to safeguarding our country's national security," Ding said, adding that the number of China's nuclear submarines were far less than those of the United States and Russia.
Ding stressed that China's national defense policy and nuclear strategy is purely defensive in nature, and that the country's naval forces would not pose any threat to other countries.
"The PLA Navy will continue to make contributions to maintain world, regional and maritime peace," he said.
The PLA Navy will celebrate its 60th birthday on Thursday this week joined by 21 naval vessels from 14 other countries and delegations from 29 other countries.
A four-day celebration that includes seminars, a fleet parade and a sampan race will be held off the coast of the eastern city of Qingdao.