Chinese military to ensure safe Olympics

July 11th, 2008 - 1:50 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, July 11 (Xinhua) A security official of the forthcoming Beijing Olympics said that troops from the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) were in position to ensure the safety of the mega event. The military had been deployed and were capable of completing their tasks, said Tian Yixiang, director of military affairs department under the Security Command Centre for the Games.

During the Olympics, the PLA army, navy and air force would be coordinated and deployed in the four military commands in and around Beijing, Tian told Xinhua.

Land forces based in Beijing and three neighbouring military area commands, including Shenyang, Jinan and Nanjing, would help to safeguard the Games, he said.

Special forces such as an army air unit, an engineering force and chemical defence troops would join the mission, he noted, adding combat aircraft, helicopter, warships, missiles, chemical defence equipment and radar would be used in case of security threats.

To ensure safety, Beijing would follow other host cities in setting up a no-fly zone, Tian said. The air force would prevent and tackle emergencies, especially terrorist attacks, based on information sent by its defence system.

A four-step countermeasure, including warning, interception, forced landing and attack, would be used for potential threats.

Troops would also cooperate with public security departments to exercise strict ground control and ban the lift-off of any small aircraft, Tian said.

A multi-layer observation and defence system of the navy would be established during the Games, he said.

Prohibited and restricted areas near the competing venues would be set up to ban suspicious vessels and the navy would be on round-the-clock patrol, according to the official.

Searching and observation efforts would be intensified with security measures beefed up in radar, observation and communication posts, he said.

Before any event at sea started, frogmen from the marine would carry out underwater check-up to eliminate suspicious objects and hidden danger, Tian noted.

The navy would also be engaged in rescue missions in case of natural disasters such as typhoon, tsunami and storms, he said.

The focus of the military would be on tackling possible terrorist attacks equipped with nuclear and chemical weapons.

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