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Global Times

PLA Xinjiang Military Command reveals 3 new weapon systems: reports

Global Times

By Liu Xuanzun Published: May 16, 2021 10:16 PM

The Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Xinjiang Military Command, deployed in China's high altitude western regions, revealed that it has taken delivery of three new advanced weapons systems over the past week, including armored vehicles and artillery pieces, as analysts said on Sunday that troops are upgrading their arsenal to meet modern warfare demands.

Dozens of a new type of armored assault vehicle recently entered service with a PLA Xinjiang Military Command unit deployed in a snowy plateau region at an elevation of more than 4,500 meters,, a video news website affiliated with the PLA, reported on Sunday.

The eight-wheeled armored vehicles come in different variations, with some equipped with large caliber rifled guns, some with auto cannons, some with machine guns and some with howitzer systems, the footage shows.

Another newly delivered weapons system is a new-type, four-wheeled self-propelled howitzer, to a group which recently conducted its first live-fire target practice deep in the Karakorum Mountains at an altitude of 4,500 meters, China Central Television (CCTV) reported on May 10.

In addition, a batch of new self-propelled heavy rocket launchers, which are highly mobile, fast-reacting, highly accurate, very deadly and jamming-resistant, recently went into service at a unit deployed in a snow-covered region at an elevation of more than 5,200 meters, a separate CCTV report on May 8 revealed.

These three new weapon systems are identified as the Type 08 armored vehicle, a 122mm-caliber self-propelled howitzer partially using technologies from the PCL-181 155mm-caliber self-propelled howitzer, and the PHL-03 long-range multiple rocket launcher system, Shanghai-based news website reported.

By upgrading their arsenal with the latest weapons and equipment, the PLA's high-altitude troops are gaining enhanced mobility and fire power, so they can better fulfill their missions in safeguarding the country's sovereignty and territorial integrity, a Chinese military affairs analyst who requested anonymity told the Global Times on Sunday.

The PLA Xinjiang Military Command has been commissioning multiple types of advanced weaponry over the past year, observers said.

In early 2021, the command received delivery of the first batch of newly developed Type 15 light tanks, which analysts said excel at rapid reaction combat in plateau regions.

Other weapons and equipment, including the PLC-181 howitzer and third-generation Mengshi assault vehicles, are also found in official reports, said.

These are forming a complete, modern ground combat system which is particularly of significance to plateau combat, analysts said.

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