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China’s military to launch website, promises transparency

world Updated: Jul 23, 2009 17:03 IST

Seeking to dispel the ‘China threat´ theory, the Communist giant’s secretive 2.3 million-strong military, the world’s largest, will launch a bilingual website soon which claims to be as informative as the Pentagon’s portal.

The Ministry of National Defence (MND) will launch an official bilingual website on August 1, which military experts say, is a leap forward for the Chinese army, which is attempting to be more transparent and focus more on “public diplomacy”.

The launch of the site, in Chinese and in English, is meant to allow “more access” to the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), the state-run China Daily said.

Senior Colonel Huang Xueping, deputy director-general of the MND’s information office, said that the website will operate on a trial basis from August 1, on the 82nd anniversary of the founding of the 2.3-million-strong PLA.

Access to the PLA has been limited to tightly controlled reports with handful of media organisations granted access to its facilities.

“The launch of the MND website is a major step for the PLA to open up to the outside world,” Huang said.

The official did not elaborate on the website’s contents, but web editors running the official site said the portal will “cover a large amount of information”, featuring both regular activities and background about the Chinese army.