Asien — China’s National Defense in 2008

VIII. The People’s Armed Police Force

As a com­po­nent of China’s armed forces and sub­or­di­nate to the State Coun­cil, the People’s Armed Police Force (PAPF) is under the dual lead­er­ship of the State Coun­cil and the CMC. The PAPF con­sists of the inter­nal secu­ri­ty force and var­i­ous police forces. The bor­der pub­lic secu­ri­ty, fire­fight­ing and secu­ri­ty guard forces are also com­po­nents of the PAPF. The PAPF is charged with the fun­da­men­tal task of safe­guard­ing nation­al secu­ri­ty, main­tain­ing social sta­bil­i­ty and ensur­ing that the peo­ple live and work in peace and contentment. 

Rou­tine Guard Duties
Rou­tine guard duties refer to duties the PAPF per­forms to main­tain inter­nal secu­ri­ty, which are most­ly car­ried out by the inter­nal secu­ri­ty force. The basic tasks are: to guard against all forms of attempt­ed attacks and sab­o­tage; pro­tect des­ig­nat­ed indi­vid­u­als and facil­i­ties; ensure the secu­ri­ty of impor­tant inter­na­tion­al and nation­al con­fer­ences and large-scale cul­tur­al and sports events; pro­tect impor­tant air­ports, radio sta­tions, and key and con­fi­den­tial units, and vital places in such sec­tors as state econ­o­my and nation­al defense; pro­tect impor­tant bridges and tun­nels; ensure the secu­ri­ty of pris­ons and deten­tion hous­es; and main­tain pub­lic order in state-des­ig­nat­ed large and medi­um-sized cities or spe­cif­ic zones. Rou­tine guard duties can be divid­ed into reg­u­lar and tem­po­rary mis­sions. Usu­al­ly the reg­u­lar mis­sions are assigned by the Min­istry of Pub­lic Secu­ri­ty, and the tem­po­rary ones are assigned by local Par­ty com­mit­tees, gov­ern­ments or pub­lic secu­ri­ty organs. 

Every day, more than 260,000 PAPF ser­vice­men are on guard duty. In recent years, the PAPF has made efforts to reg­u­lar­ize and strict­ly man­age the per­for­mance of its duties, and improve it through sci­ence and tech­nol­o­gy, includ­ing improve­ment of duty-relat­ed facil­i­ties, and reduce hid­den haz­ards. It has real­ized all-per­son­nel, whole-process, full-time visu­al­iza­tion in duty man­age­ment. It has effec­tive­ly enhanced duty per­for­mance and ensured the safe­ty of guard­ed tar­gets by opti­miz­ing duty orga­ni­za­tion and arrange­ment, imple­ment­ing duty reg­u­la­tions and metic­u­lous­ly orga­niz­ing impor­tant tem­po­rary duties. On aver­age, the PAPF annu­al­ly han­dles dozens of attempt­ed attacks against guard­ed tar­gets, pre­vents hun­dreds of escape attempts by detained sus­pects and impris­oned con­victs, orga­nizes thou­sands of impor­tant tem­po­rary duties, and ensures the secu­ri­ty of impor­tant inter­na­tion­al and nation­al con­fer­ences and large-scale events in coop­er­a­tion with the gov­ern­ment depart­ments con­cerned. The var­i­ous units of the PAPF take an active part in efforts to keep pub­lic order. Since 2007, they have assist­ed the pub­lic secu­ri­ty organs in catch­ing and arrest­ing more than 2,800 crim­i­nal suspects. 

Han­dling Pub­lic Emer­gen­cies
The han­dling of pub­lic emer­gen­cies refers to oper­a­tions by the PAPF to deter and deal with emer­gen­cies which endan­ger pub­lic secu­ri­ty. Main­ly under­tak­en by the PAPF stand­by forces, such oper­a­tions include those to han­dle pub­lic secu­ri­ty inci­dents, nat­ur­al dis­as­ters, dis­as­trous acci­dents, and pub­lic health inci­dents. The spe­cif­ic tasks are to con­trol affect­ed areas, check the iden­ti­fi­ca­tions, vehi­cles and belong­ings of sus­pect­ed per­sons, pro­tect impor­tant tar­gets, dis­perse ille­gal assem­blies, res­cue hostages and those trapped by trou­ble­mak­ers, nip ille­gal activ­i­ties and crim­i­nal offens­es in the bud, hunt down crim­i­nal sus­pects, and par­tic­i­pate in emer­gency res­cue and dis­as­ter relief work. 

The PAPF is the state’s main­stay and shock force in han­dling pub­lic emer­gen­cies. The PAPF is assigned such mis­sions by the CPC Cen­tral Com­mit­tee, the State Coun­cil, the CMC or local Par­ty com­mit­tees, gov­ern­ments and pub­lic secu­ri­ty organs, and car­ries out these mis­sions under the uni­fied lead­er­ship of the above authorities. 

The PAPF makes full prepa­ra­tions for han­dling pub­lic emer­gen­cies by estab­lish­ing all lev­els of com­mand cen­ters, improv­ing infor­ma­tion sys­tems, allo­cat­ing resources sci­en­tif­i­cal­ly, and pro­vid­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tions, sup­plies and trans­porta­tion in a reli­able way. On receiv­ing mis­sion orders, it is able to deploy imme­di­ate­ly and arrive at the scene in time. It adopts such means and meth­ods as mil­i­tary deter­rence, per­sua­sion and legit­i­mate use of force. It always exer­cis­es cau­tion in the use of force, com­pul­so­ry mea­sures, police instru­ments and weapons. It cracks down on a hand­ful of crim­i­nals in accor­dance with the law and deals with pub­lic dis­tur­bances, riots, ille­gal demon­stra­tions, group fight­ing with weapons, acts of vio­lence and ter­ror­ism effi­cient­ly, appro­pri­ate­ly and legal­ly. In the past two years it has tak­en part in oper­a­tions to han­dle the “3.14” Lhasa riots, hunt down the “East Turk­istan” ter­ror­ists, con­duct acci­dent res­cues, deal with large-scale mass dis­tur­bances, and respond to var­i­ous emer­gen­cies. In this way it has effec­tive­ly upheld the fun­da­men­tal inter­ests of the peo­ple, main­tained the social sta­bil­i­ty of the places where its forces are sta­tioned and safe­guard­ed the author­i­ty of the nation’s laws. 

Inter­na­tion­al Counter-Ter­ror­ism Coop­er­a­tion
Chi­na attach­es great impor­tance to inter­na­tion­al counter-ter­ror­ism coop­er­a­tion, and so far has par­tic­i­pat­ed in 11 inter­na­tion­al counter-ter­ror­ism treaties. The PAPF is an impor­tant counter-ter­ror­ism force of the state. 

Strength­en­ing inter­na­tion­al counter-ter­ror­ism con­sul­ta­tions and exchanges. In com­pli­ance with inter­na­tion­al counter-ter­ror­ism treaties and agree­ments, the PAPF has sent del­e­ga­tions to over 30 coun­tries for bilat­er­al or mul­ti­lat­er­al counter-ter­ror­ism exchanges, includ­ing France, Ger­many, Spain, Italy, Aus­tralia, Israel, Brazil, Cuba, South Africa, Rus­sia and Pak­istan, and host­ed del­e­ga­tions from 17 coun­tries, such as Rus­sia, Roma­nia, France, Italy, Hun­gary, South Africa, Egypt, Aus­tralia and Belarus. 

Send­ing per­son­nel abroad to receive train­ing or pro­vide train­ing assis­tance. The PAPF has sent del­e­ga­tions or per­son­nel to a dozen coun­tries, includ­ing France, Israel, Hun­gary, Sin­ga­pore, Malaysia and Thai­land, to attend train­ing cours­es in spe­cial duties, par­tic­i­pate in or observe con­tests of var­i­ous kinds, and con­duct exchanges in counter-ter­ror­ism tech­niques and skills. It has sent teams of instruc­tors to such coun­tries as Roma­nia and Azer­bai­jan to pro­vide teach­ing or train­ing assistance. 

Hold­ing joint counter-ter­ror­ism exer­cis­es. In Sep­tem­ber 2007, the PAPF and the Inter­nal Troops of Rus­sia staged their first joint counter-ter­ror­ism exer­cise, “Coop­er­a­tion-2007.” The exer­cise focused on “oper­a­tions by spe­cial forces to res­cue hostages and destroy ter­ror­ist orga­ni­za­tions and groups.” 

Main­tain­ing Pub­lic Secu­ri­ty in Bor­der and Coastal Areas and Order­ly Entry and Exit at Ports 

The bor­der pub­lic secu­ri­ty force, list­ed as a com­po­nent of the PAPF, is an armed law-enforce­ment body deployed by the state in bor­der and coastal areas and at ports. Its main respon­si­bil­i­ties are as fol­lows: bor­der and coastal pub­lic secu­ri­ty admin­is­tra­tion; ports and bor­der inspec­tion and sur­veil­lance; patrols and sur­veil­lance in areas adja­cent to Hong Kong and Macao; patrols and sur­veil­lance along the demar­ca­tion line of the Beibu Gulf; and the pre­ven­tion of and crack­down on ille­gal and crim­i­nal acts in bor­der and coastal areas, such as ille­gal bor­der cross­ing, smug­gling and drug trafficking. 

The bor­der pub­lic secu­ri­ty force has 30 con­tin­gents in provinces (autonomous regions or munic­i­pal­i­ties direct­ly under the cen­tral gov­ern­ment, except Bei­jing); 110 detach­ments in bor­der and coastal pre­fec­tures (pre­fec­ture-lev­el cities, autonomous pre­fec­tures or leagues) and 20 marine police detach­ments in coastal pre­fec­tures; 207 active-duty bor­der inspec­tion sta­tions at open ports; 310 groups in bor­der and coastal coun­ties (coun­ty-lev­el cities or ban­ners); 1,691 bor­der police sub­sta­tions in bor­der and coastal town­ships (towns); 46 fron­tier inspec­tion sta­tions on major bor­der routes; and 113 mobile groups deployed in impor­tant sec­tors in bor­der areas. 

In recent years the bor­der pub­lic secu­ri­ty force has made efforts to imple­ment the strat­e­gy of safe­guard­ing the peo­ple and con­sol­i­dat­ing bor­der defense; strength­en pub­lic secu­ri­ty efforts by the gen­er­al pub­lic; improve mech­a­nisms for inves­ti­gat­ing, medi­at­ing and set­tling dis­putes, con­flicts and mass inci­dents; tack­le promi­nent pub­lic secu­ri­ty issues; pro­mote the build­ing of mod­el vil­lages and con­sol­i­date bor­der defense; and help chil­dren in need, thus vig­or­ous­ly pro­mot­ing har­mo­ny and sta­bil­i­ty in bor­der and coastal areas. Fur­ther efforts have been made by bor­der inspec­tion sta­tions to improve their ser­vices. As a result, an envi­ron­ment has been cre­at­ed for safe, rapid and con­ve­nient cus­toms clearance. 

The bor­der pub­lic secu­ri­ty force, sup­port­ed by oth­er rel­e­vant depart­ments, has cracked down hard on crimes, such as ille­gal bor­der cross­ing, drug traf­fick­ing and smug­gling, and car­ried out cam­paigns to com­bat orga­nized crim­i­nal gangs and sup­press evil forces in bor­der and coastal areas. Since 2007 it has arrest­ed 4,400 ille­gal bor­der crossers, seized 3,806 kg of drugs, seized smug­gled goods worth RMB620 mil­lion, cracked 19,205 crim­i­nal cas­es and han­dled 60,063 vio­la­tions of pub­lic security. 

Pur­suant to rel­e­vant pro­vi­sions of the Min­istry of Pub­lic Secu­ri­ty, the marine police force has estab­lished and strength­ened mar­itime law-enforce­ment agen­cies, aug­ment­ed its law-enforce­ment per­son­nel, refined its law-enforce­ment reg­u­la­tions, and improved its ships and equip­ment. It has cracked 41 mar­itime crim­i­nal cas­es, car­ried out 115 mar­itime res­cue and sal­vage oper­a­tions, and saved 238 peo­ple in distress. 

Infor­ma­tion Office of the State Coun­cil of the People’s Repub­lic of China 

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