Defence Minister pledges to keep army clean of corruption

Defence Minister pledges to keep army clean of corruption
File photo of Guo Boxiong
PHOTO: China Daily/ANN

Defence Minister Chang Wanquan pledged intensified efforts in running the armed forces with "strict discipline and in accordance with the law" on Friday in Beijing amid China's sweeping anti-graft campaign.

The military will strengthen ideological and political work and make sure that the armed forces resolutely follow the commands of the Party as well as President Xi Jinping, Chang said. Xi is also chairman of the Central Military Commission.

Chang made the remarks at a reception marking the 88th anniversary of the founding of the People's Liberation Army, which falls on Saturday. The anniversary also closely follows the decision to expel Guo Boxiong, former vice-chairman of the Central Military Commission, from the Party on Thursday, the latest high-profile figure claimed in the massive anti-graft crackdown.

Guo, 73, will be prosecuted on charges of accepting bribes to grant promotions and other benefits for others. His case brought the number of removed senior military officials in China to 39.

The list got longer on Friday as Wang Xin, former political commissar of the traffic troops of China's Armed Police force, came under investigation for alleged serious disciplinary violations, common wording for corruption.

Zhang Daixin, a deputy commander at the military command in Heilongjiang, was sentenced to 10 years on charges of corruption, the military said on Friday.

Guo's former fellow military commission vice-chairman, Xu Caihou, was said to have confessed to taking large bribes earlier, but his case did not reach trial because Xu died of bladder cancer in March.

The decision to expel Guo from the Party displayed the Party's "zero tolerance" approach to fighting corruption and a clear attitude by the Party to strictly discipline itself and the military, according to PLA Daily.

The drive to root out corruption in the military comes in parallel with China's increased efforts to modernize its forces. Corruption is believed to undermine China's combat effectiveness.

An anti-corruption campaign in the military purifies the military environment and improves combat effectiveness, Defence Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said at a regular news briefing on Thursday.

Defence Minister Chang said, "We will enhance the PLA's capabilities for addressing various security threats and accomplishing diversified military tasks, and make sure that the armed forces are always ready for and able to win wars."

On Friday, the Central Military Commission promoted 10 military and police officers to general. Xi attended the ceremony in Beijing.

zhaoshengnan@chinadaily.com.cn

 

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