China celebrates 70 years since victory over Japan
China kicked off a huge military ceremony marking the 70th anniversary of Japan’s defeat in World War II on Thursday, as major Western leaders stayed away.
President Xi Jinping oversaw the event, riding in a black car past thousands of troops and hundreds of tanks and missiles ahead of a parade through Tiananmen Square.
China’s “total victory” over Japanese invasion “restored China’s status as a major country in the world”, Xi said.
“The unyielding Chinese people fought gallantly and finally won total victory against the Japanese militarist aggressors, thus preserving China’s 5,000-year-old civilisation and upholding the cause of peace,” Xi said.
He described the eight-year conflict as “a decisive battle between justice and evil, between light and darkness”.
The parade comes as China takes a more assertive stance over territorial disputes with its Asian neighbours, after decades of double digit percentage expansion of its military spending. Details