Xu Qiliang was appointed vice-chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC) of the Communist Party of China (CPC), on Nov. 4, 2012. The seventh Plenary Session of the 17th CPC Central Committee made the announcement that the CMC was augmented to include Fan Changlong and Xu Qiliang, both members of the 17th CPC Central Committee, as vice-chairmen in a communique upon the closure of the four-day meeting.
General Xu was born in March 1950 in east China's Shandong Province and joined the CPC in July 1967. He joined the PLA in July 1966 and graduated from the fifth aviation school of the PLA Air Force, holding a junior-college diploma.
Xu, an Air Force General, is a member of the Central Military Commission of the People's Republic of China.
Beginning his military career as a flying cadet in the first preparatory school of the PLA Air Force, Xu served as the Air Force Commander for more than five years before Sunday's promotion.
After a study period of roughly three months, Xu was transferred to the PLA Army's Ace troop, the 38th Corps, in 1966 to receive basic training and back to the Air Force at the end of 1967 to learn flying.
Xu became an Air Force pilot in August 1969 and was promoted to be the chief of the independent squadron of the Air Force's 26th Division in 1976.
Xu served as deputy commander of the 26th Division and later the commander from 1980 to 1984, a period during which he also studied in a senior course of the Air Force's Command Institute.
Xu was promoted to chief of staff of the Air Force's command post in Shanghai in 1985 and then became a cadet to the PLA's National Defense University and graduated in 1988.
After that, he was promoted to commander of the Air Force's Eighth Corps in 1990, the Air Force's deputy chief of staff in 1993 and chief of staff in 1994.
Xu took two short-term courses in the PLA's National Defense University in 1994 and 1998. He served as deputy commander of the PLA's Shenyang Military Area Command from 1999 to 2004, during which he took another short course for generals in the PLA's National Defense University.
Xu was promoted to the PLA's deputy chief of general staff in 2004 and appointed to serve as commander of the PLA's Air Force in 2007, when he was also recruited by the CPC's Central Military Commission at the first Plenary session of the CPC's 17th Central Committee.
Xu was promoted to an Air Force full general in 2007 before he was commissioned the Air Force commander.
Xu was an alternate member of the CPC's 14th and 15th Central Committees and a member of the CPC's 16th Central Committee and has been a member of the 17th CPC Central Committee.