The Vice Chairman of China's Central Military Commission, General Xu Caihou, is continuing his visit to the US. Monday, he delivered a speech at a leading US think tank, saying China's development is peaceful, and its military posture, defensive.
Over the past year, some US officials have expressed alarm over what they see as China's unprecedented military expansion.
But speaking to US scholars and officials in Washington on Monday, China's second-highest ranking military officer, General Xu Caihou, assured his audience that China's arms buildup threatens no one.
General Xu Caihou said, "It is a fact that we have been developing cruise missiles. We put them on display during the military parade on October 1st to celebrate the PRC's 60th anniversary. What I want to tell you is that the aim of the development of such weapons is purely for self-defense, and will not pose a threat to any country."
Xu said China is entirely committed to peaceful development. He said that the country will never seek to establish its hegemony over others, or engage in military expansion or an arm race. The focus of its military is to protect China's economic development, and to defend against separatists and extremists, he said.
The general also discussed China's military reforms in the direction of high-tech and modernization. But he said China's double-digit annual increases in defense spending is "quite low" compared with the US.