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New Weapons Unveiled as China Marks 70 Years of Communist Rule

'No force can stop the progress of the Chinese people,' Xi says at Beijing parade
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 1, 2019 12:14 AM CDT
Chinese leader Xi Jinping rides in an open-top limousine during a parade to mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of Communist China in Beijing, Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2019.   (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)
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(Newser) – Trucks carrying weapons including a nuclear-capable missile designed to evade US defenses rumbled through Beijing on Tuesday as the Communist Party celebrated its 70th anniversary in power with a military parade that showcased its emergence as an increasingly ambitious global power. The military showed off China's most advanced weapons, some being shown for the first time, as rows of soldiers marched in lockstep past President Xi Jinping and other leaders on Tiananmen Square, the country's symbolic political heart. Thousands of spectators waved Chinese flags and fighter jets flew low overhead. The event marks the anniversary of the Oct. 1, 1949, announcement of the founding of the People's Republic of China by Mao Zedong following a civil war.

"No force can shake the status of our great motherland, and no force can stop the progress of the Chinese people and the Chinese nation," Xi, wearing a gray Mao jacket, said in a nationally televised speech. The event highlighted rapidly developing Chinese weapons technology that foreign analysts say is close to matching the US, Russia, and Europe in missiles, drones, and some other fields, the AP reports. One of the most closely-watched weapons unveiled Tuesday was the Dongfeng-17, a nuclear-capable glider that foreign analysts say is designed to maneuver at high speed to evade anti-missile defenses. A colorful parade with 70 floats and 100,000 participants highlighting China's achievements followed the military parade.

(Read more China stories.)

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