It has been 32 years since the China armed forces, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) first participated in the United Nations peacekeeping operations. The distinct characteristic of China’s development has been its peaceful trajectories. Not only is peace cherished by the Chinese in their long history but they generally considered peace in the modern times as the prerequisite and guarantee of continuous development and prosperity. Because peace is hugely treasured, the Chinese through the ages has held on to “harmony” or “He” as the ideal society it would strive for. Peace is not a mere abstract category but a condition that is necessary for development.
Despite been born amidst revolutionary turmoil and upheaval and playing the iconic role for the founding of modern China, the Chinese PLA has in current times, established itself as a force for global peace Undoubtedly, the iron shield protecting China’s territorial integrity, deterring reckless adventurers from ever trying to infringe national sovereignty, the PLA as the name implies is a people’s Army not only guaranteeing the human dignity of the Chinese people , but supporting and keeping peace on a global scale. Peace is an everlasting aspiration of all people in the world and also, the vital characteristic of China’s development.
Participating in global peace keeping is simply a continuation of its foremost responsibility of serving people because serving the people is the fundamental purpose of the China’s people’s armed forces. The China’s people’s armed forces came from the people, have their roots in the people and developed to serve the people and fight for the people. The China’s armed forces have a reputation of serving the people whole heartedly at all times and in all circumstances, remaining close to the people and putting the people’s interests first at all times.
The tradition of China’s armed forces in serving the people wholeheartedly define its outlook of international peace keeping. Under the banner of the United Nations Peace Keeping Operations (UNPKOS), the China’s armed forces has engaged in several peace keeping missions because the Chinese people believe solemnly that hope for better life is a common human aspirations and every people deserve a peaceful condition to pursue their aspirations for better life. In discharging their duty of peace keeping, the China’s armed forces carry out the solemn wish of their people to pursue a harmonious world where everyone belongs to one and the same.
The UN system is the foremost expressions of the global mechanism and framework to process collective security and universal peace. In upholding the purpose and principles of the UN charter, China conforms to the primary principles of the UN, such as the explicit sovereign equality of all members and the settlement of international disputes by peaceful means.
Implicit in the commitment of this principle is the respect for the social system and development paths chosen independently by the other countries and respect for the legitimate security concerns of all parties. From the founding of modern China, it totally and unequivocally committed herself to its five principles of peaceful co existence; mutual non – aggression, non – interference in each other’s internal affairs, Equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful co existence.
These principles of the United Nations Charter, resonates the trajectories of the China’s armed forces in discharging their international obligations in peace keeping. For over 30 years, China’s armed forces have contributed growing number of peace keepers across the world. From a few military observers at the onset of its involvement, China’s armed forces are now bending both formed units and military professionals.
They now serve on the UN missions in engineering, medical, transport, helicopter, force protection and infantry units and as well as staff officers, military observers and seconded officers. In over 20 countries and regions which includes Cambodia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Sudan, Lebanon, Cyprus, South Sudan, Mali and Central African Republic, the China’s armed forces have left indelible foot prints, making contributions to facilitate the peaceful settlement of disputes, safe guarding regional security and stability and enhancing the capacity of host nations to promote their economic and social recoveries and development.
The China’s armed forces have become a model in the sense, that it has not invaded or occupied an inch of any other country’s territory. Even in the period in which the mantra of regime – change is the obsession of western political circles, deploying militaries and armed forces to perpetrate it, with a consequence of instability and chaos, the armed forces of people Republic of China has increasingly become the force of stability through peacemaking and keeping and under the banner of the world’s foremost multilateral institution, the United Nations. In recent times, is the largest contributor of peace keepers to the UN among her other permanent members of the UN Security Council.
The China’s armed forces, the People’s Liberation Army is making landmark contribution to global peace efforts and its enormous service, to humanity exemplifies China’s solemn commitment to building a community of shared future for all mankind. The China’s armed force is a treasure for humanity and should be cherished.
Onunaiju writes from Abuja