China has celebrated 70 years of Communist party rule and its rise to global superpower status with a military parade showcasing the country’s technology. China’s leadership past and present gathered on a viewing platform over Tiananmen Square on Tuesday to watch the military parade of 15,000 troops and weapons including new hypersonic drones and intercontinental ballistic missiles.
“There is no force that can shake the status of this great nation. No force can stop the Chinese people and the Chinese nation forging ahead,” President Xi Jingping said. Hewing to tradition, he wore a grey Mao suit and watched the parade from the same spot where Mao stood to announce the establishment of the People’s Republic of China on October 1, 1949.
Xi in his speech promised to “maintain the long-term prosperity and stability” of Hong Kong and said the government was committed to the political template which gives the city limited autonomy, ‘one country, two systems’.
But months of protests in the city have shown widespread opposition to his vision for China, of economic prosperity without political freedoms.
Chinese news reports say it might include a new long-range nuclear-armed missiles and a supersonic drone aircraft. Military spokespeople have declined to give details.