China to rationalize security at military facilities
A draft amendment to improve security at military facilities went on the table for its first reading by China's top legislature on December 23.
The bill, which expands the definition of military facilities to include border control, coast guard and temporary facilities for combat needs, was submitted to the bi-monthly session of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), which runs from Monday through Saturday. The bill also includes research, production, testing and storage facilities of major defense industry enterprises.
Conflicts have arisen between military security and the needs of local communities, said Qi Jianguo, deputy chief of General Staff of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA), when elaborating on the bill to lawmakers.
The law should be revised to enhance coordination between military and civilian authorities and set the boundary clearly, Qi said.
The bill asks governments at county level and above to consult the military on development, urban planning, and construction projects that affect military facilities.
The bill will require the military to consider the economic and social needs of local communities when they draft military plans. It obliges them to consult governments before installing military facilities and subject programs to environmental impact evaluation. They are asked to avoid military installations in busy, crowded civilian areas while civilian departments are asked to avoid development near military bases.
To tighten security, the bill further clarifies different security levels at military areas, regulates construction near military airports and bans civilian activity that hinders the performance of military radio.
It also adds a detailed definition of measures that guards of military facilities may deploy against intruders. They can force them out or detain serious offenders and hand over them to police or national security departments. They can also confiscate devices, tools and other articles carried by intruders and remove any barriers that threaten security.