PLA Hong Kong garrison: "A stabilizer in Hong Kong"

China Military Online
Zhang Tao


File photo shows a soldier of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Garrison in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region teaches a child to take aim at the target on the Open Day. (Photo by Zhou Hanqing, Yi Ding)

"Battle exists every minute"

When the PLA garrison first came to Hong Kong, there were always new soldiers wondering "which is better, capitalism or socialism". But with the substantial progress that the Chinese mainland has made in the past 20 years, Chen Wenxian found that fewer soldiers ask this question now.

But that doesn't mean the complete stop of sugar-coated bullets.

The Central station of the garrison is located in the most bustling section of Hong Kong, where tall buildings are standing next to one another and the station is less than 200m away from the Bank of America. A block away there is often progression and demonstration.

One day in the second half of 2016, political instructor Zhou Jun was teaching military theories to female soldiers, but the sound of jarring slogans came from a block away.

"The garrison barracks are only separated from the outside with a thin enclosure wall. Test and battle really exist every minute," said Zhou Jun calmly, and encouraged the female soldiers to drown the sound of the outside progression with waves of applauses and singing.

"Being situated in the special environment of 'one country, two systems' and in face of the conflict of two different social systems and the impact of diversified thoughts and cultures, the PLA Hong Kong garrison, from the first day it arrived here, has made 'casting a steadfast military soul' its priority task and lasting topic in military governance and development," Yue Shixin said.

"Through experience and practice, every officer of the PLA Hong Kong garrison has become highly conscious of the rule of law and would apply the law to solve problems and dissolve conflicts," he added.

"A stabilizer in Hong Kong"

At the end of the last century, there was a strong undercurrent in Hong Kong despite its prosperity. The PLA Hong Kong garrison followed and served the work arrangements made by the central government about Hong Kong and carried out a series of military activities.

"As long as the PLA is here, Hong Kong's prosperity and stability can be guaranteed. We are very sure of that," a Hong Kong resident concluded after observing the military exercise when the garrison first came to Hong Kong.

In the period of 20 years, the garrison organized 37 joint maritime and air patrols, 18 joint maritime and air search and rescue exercises with the SAR government, four grand military parades, and 28 military Open Day events, and Hong Kong residents visited the barracks for 620,000 person-times.

"These activities demonstrate China's national sovereignty and military presence, inspire the forces that love China and Hong Kong, and deter hostile forces," said Tan Benhong, commander of the PLA Hong Kong garrison.

20 years ago, the PLA Hong Kong garrison came to Hong Kong on a rainy night. In the past 20 years, they have secured a firm footing here through unremitting and concrete efforts, and have been recognized as a strong and civilized force in Hong Kong, becoming a "stabilizer" that protects the prosperity and stability of the SAR.


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