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    Xi confers honor on PLA unit in Hong Kong

    President Xi Jinping recently signed an order to confer an honorary title on a special military unit stationed in Hong Kong ahead of the upcoming 20th anniversary of the city’s return to the motherland.

    The title is called the Hong Kong Garrison Model Special Force Company. It is bestowed on the First Company of the Special Force in the People’s Liberation Army garrison in Hong Kong.

    The company aims to become a world-class unit, and has upheld strong discipline and completed many important missions, the order said. It has effectively fulfilled its garrison duties in a special area.

    The order urged all military and the armed police forces to learn from the company, using the Party’s innovative theories to equip their minds.

    The order also required the military to be absolutely loyal, pure and reliable, and resolutely follow the command of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the Central Military Commission.

    Following the model company’s example, strengthening combat prowess should be a fundamental goal, the order said. The military should train soldiers for real combat, uphold reforms and innovations, and strictly follow laws and regulations.

    The order also asked the military to use outstanding achievements to welcome the upcoming 19th National Congress of the CPC in the autumn.

    China resumed sovereignty of Hong Kong on July 1, 1997, concluding 156 years of British colonial rule. The PLA has had a garrison in Hong Kong ever since, and is responsible for defense duties in the special administrative region.

    The garrison is funded by the central government and has 6,000 active personnel. The commander is Lieutenant General Tan Benhong.