China warns 'hostile forces' trying to undermine military reform
- Top 10 News for 12/2: Crude Rips on OPEC Cut; Starbucks' Schultz Steps Down; Nonfarm Payrolls Flat in Nov.
- Unemployment Rate Drops to 4.6%
- Bond yields slip on U.S. jobs data, euro steady before Italy vote
- Alibaba (BABA) Founder Jack Ma Discuss Plans to Retire; 'I Don't Want to Die at the Office'
- Starbucks Coffee (SBUX) CEO Howard Schultz to Step Down, Appointed Executive Chairman; Kevin Johnson New CEO
Paramilitary policemen hold their fists in front of a flag of Communist Party of China as they attend an oath-taking rally to ensure the safety of the upcoming 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), at a military base in Hangzhou, Z
Get inside Wall Street with StreetInsider Premium. Claim your 2-week free trial here.
BEIJING (Reuters) - China's military warned on Friday that "hostile forces" were seeking to spread online rumors about the ongoing reform of the armed forces, which will see 300,000 soldiers laid off, and admitted some of the rumors were having a damaging effect.
Chinese President Xi Jinping unexpectedly announced last September that he would cut troop numbers by 300,000, or some 13 percent of the world's biggest military, currently 2.3-million strong.
The cuts come at a time of heightened economic uncertainty in China as growth slows and the leadership grapples with painful economic reforms. On Tuesday, hundreds of previously demobilized soldiers protested in Beijing.
The lay-offs are part of broader reforms to modernize the military, moving away from the old Soviet-era command module and putting more emphasis on high-tech weapons such as stealth jets and anti-satellite missiles.
In a commentary, the official People's Liberation Army Daily said rumors about the reforms were flooding social media sites with self-professed experts spreading all sorts baseless stories such as how demobilized soldiers could get reduced benefits.
"The broad mass of the armed forces must clearly recognize that in the vast majority of these rumors there are online users unable to distinguish the truth, wantonly lost in fanciful thoughts and conjecture," it said.
"But there are also no lack of certain hostile forces thinking of ways to try in vain to sow chaos in our reform process," it added, without naming those hostile forces.
These fanciful stories have attracted the attention of many soldiers, some of whom believe what they read, the paper added.
"Some have been taken in, and worried about personal losses this has affected their work."
Soldiers have a responsibility not to believe the rumors and only get their news from official sources, the newspaper said.
The government has repeatedly promised to look after demobilized soldiers, with Xi saying in June they would be found other work.
(Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Michael Perry)
Serious News for Serious Traders! Try StreetInsider.com Premium Free!
You May Also Be Interested In
- Italian instability is not start of euro zone crisis: Eurogroup head
- OSCE says Uzbek election underscores need for deep reforms
- Mexico deep water oil push taps data that solved dinosaur riddle
Create E-mail Alert Related CategoriesReuters
Sign up for StreetInsider Free!
Receive full access to all new and archived articles, unlimited portfolio tracking, e-mail alerts, custom newswires and RSS feeds - and more!