The Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Garrison in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region(HKSAR) held a military parade Sunday morning, the first of its kind since Hong Kong's return to the motherland in 1997.
Braving the scorching sun, some 30,000 people from all walks of life in Hong Kong watch the parade at the Shek Kong barracks, including Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Tung Chee-hwa.
About 3,000 PLA garrison soldiers took part in the parade on Sunday, which is also the 77th founding anniversary of the PLA.
Commander of the People's Liberation Army Garrison in Hong Kong Wang Jitang inspected the soldiers before the parade. The parade featured formations of troops of the land, naval and air forces, followed by formations of armored vehicles and helicopters.
A PLA official said earlier that the parade was aimed at displaying the national sovereignty, strength of national defense and the central government's power and determination to safeguard national and regional security.
He said he hoped that the parade would display the PLA's modernization level and help promote close relationship between the army and the Hong Kong people.
According to the schedule, the PLA Garrison in Hong Kong will hold a reception Sunday evening to mark the 77th founding anniversary of the PLA. Some 200 guests including principal officials of the HKSAR government and leaders of the representative offices of the central organs in Hong Kong will be present. Commander of the garrison Wang Jitang will deliver a speech at the reception.
(Xinhua News Agency August 1, 2004)