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People's Armed Police

The Chinese People's Armed Police Force was set up in April 1983 and is made up of PLA forces on domestic defense duty and the armed, frontier defense and fire-fighting police, which carry out a military service system. It is an armed defense force for social security, which undertakes police duties. The armed police force follows the rules and regulations of the PLA and enjoys equal treatment with PLA troops.

The armed police force headquarters falls under the direct jurisdiction of the Ministry of Public Security. It also has headquarters in various provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities, under which there are detachments, groups and squadrons.

The People's Armed Police, one of the PRC's three Armed Forces, numbering 1.1 million plus, has military and security missions. The Armed Police is divided into the following in accordance with the nature of missions and T/O: security guards, defense for borders, fire teams, traffic, public utility, gold, woods and mobile division. In a peaceful time, it is responsible for the interior security in coordination with the public security units, the national-level construction works, and guards. At wartime, it is under military command to carry out missions such as battlefield security, anti-infiltration, and coast guards.

The armed police force undertakes the tasks of avoiding and curbing through the use of arms acts of sabotage, defending social security and protecting national security, life and property according to the needs of public security work and in compliance with the law, government rules and regulations and other administrative laws and regulations.

Since “the Democratic Movement June, 4 1989 in Tianmen Square,” the status and importance of the People's Armed Police have seen rapidly elevated. The CCP's Central Military Committee has made public that in case there is any domestic upheaval, the People's Armed Police will be first mobilized. In other words, the Armed Police is PRC's main force in charge of the domestic security and social stability.

There are two chains of Command for People's Armed Police. The Armed Police is simultaneously under the command of the CCP's Central Military Committee and the State Council. Since the issuance of “the SOP of the PRC's Armed Police GHOs” in June 1996, the People's Armed Police GHOs has been upgraded to a great military-region level. And over the last two years, it was time and again found that 14 PLA field divisions were restructured into the People's Armed Police. Furthermore, there is a tendency that the command system of the People's Armed Police is going to be transferred from under the Ministry of Interior to the military system, and its military function is beefed up.

The PRC's Armed Police with a mixed function between the military police and the police of the democratic countries is equipped with the light weapons. In recent years, its forces have been beefed up with the wheel armored vehicles, command vehicles, and patrol cars, etc. Besides, the air patrol units like the fly boat and helicopter units have been activated with the capabilities in the field of the mobile and long-range disposition. Its contingencies have capabilities better than those of the public security police in general. Some of the GHO-level units of the Armed Police are given the PLA's military training and exercise, functioning as the main force of the domestic public security.

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Created by John Pike
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Updated Saturday, April 01, 2000 3:02:49 PM