GUANGZHOU, Jan. 1 (Xinhua) -- Thousands of Chinese marines will be deployed in the next few days to a training base in northwest China's Xinjiang to begin their first military exercise of 2016.
As the Chinese military expands its training sites and conditions, the Xinjiang base gives troops a real combat situation under desert conditions.
Previous drills were conducted at a training base in north China's Inner Mongolia, cold regions in northeast China, and in highland jungles.
The drill will improve troops' fighting abilities "in a wider area, a larger space and in a more complicated environment," said a military source.
The soldiers will be transported via a 5,900-kilometer route from southern province of Guangdong to Xinjiang by train, air or truck. Their mobilization, desert combat tactics and coordination will be tested, and they will also carry out a combat exercise with an infantry division of the Lanzhou Military Area Command.