|China would never seek hegemony|
China would never seek hegemony or engage in military expansion now or in the future, no matter how developed it becomes, says a white paper on China's National Defense in 2008 issued in Beijing on Jan. 20.
It is China's sixth white paper on National Defense since the first one was issued by the Information Office of the State Council in 1998.
It says China advocates to settle international disputes by peaceful means, and opposes aggression, expansion and the enlargement of military alliances.
With the advent of the new century, the world is undergoing tremendous changes and adjustments, says the white paper, adding new security threats keep emerging.
Facing unprecedented opportunities and challenges, China would stick to the road of peaceful development, pursue the opening-up strategy of mutual benefit, and promote the building of a harmonious world with enduring peace and common prosperity, it says.
With regard to China's security situation, the white paper says China's overall national strength has increased substantially, and its capability for safeguarding national security has been further enhanced. The country's security situation has improved steadily.
However, China is still confronted with long-term, complicated, and diverse security threats and challenges, it says. The issues of existence and development security, traditional and non-traditional security threats, as well as domestic and international security are interwoven and interactive.
Concerning world security situation, the white paper says the risk of worldwide, all-out and large-scale wars keeps low for a relatively long period of time, as the common interests of countries in the security field have increased.
Major powers are stepping up their efforts to cooperate with each other and draw on each other's strengths, while groups of new emerging developing powers are arising. Therefore, a profound readjustment is brewing in the international system.
Comparing the security strategies of major powers and developing countries, it says some major powers are realigning their security and military strategies, increasing their defense investment, speeding up the transformation of armed forces and developing advanced military technology, weapons and equipment. Some developing countries are also actively seeking to acquire advanced weapons and equipment to increase their military power.
"All countries are attaching more importance to supporting diplomatic struggles with military means," the White Paper says. Thus arms races in some regions are heating up, posing grave challenges to the international arms control and non-proliferation regime.
According to the white paper, the Asia-Pacific security situation is stable on the whole, while some factors of uncertainty exist in security.
Analyzing the uncertain factors, it says political turbulence persists in some countries undergoing economic and social transition. Ethnic and religious discords, and conflicting claims over territorial and maritime rights and interests remain serious. There are also complicated regional hot spots.
Meanwhile, the United States has increased its strategic attention to and input in the Asia-Pacific region, further consolidating its military alliances and enhancing its military capabilities.
Terrorist, separatist and extremist forces are running rampant, the White Paper says, adding non-traditional security issues such as serious natural disasters crop up frequently.
It calls on countries and regions to enhance political trust, enhance multilateral security cooperation and improve their coordinated capability for coping with regional security threats.