Chinese and American soldiers work together during a drill at Camp Rilea in Seaside of Oregon, northwest United States, Nov. 18, 2017. The Chinese and U.S. militaries were holding the 5th joint drills on humanitarian relief and disaster rescue in Oregon. (Xinhua/Yin Bogu)
More Chinese and U.S. soldiers participating in joint training will help build better capability of the Chinese and U.S. armies in humanitarian disaster control, a U.S. general said Sunday.
"I would like to take as many soldiers as possible to participate from the U.S. and China, because the more they participate, the more they understand each other, and the more chances they will see each other in real disaster," U.S. Army Pacific Commander Robert Brown said, in a response to Xinhua on how to boost the mechanism of China-U.S. cooperation on humanitarian disaster management in the future.
Brown made the remarks at a news conference at the end of an annual China-U.S. military training on humanitarian disaster management in Oregon on the western U.S. coast.
"We must continue to increase the complexity of the disasters in the efforts (in future training), because we had difficult situation but not as complex as we may face in a real disaster scenario," he said.
Brown said he had seen the Chinese and U.S. soldiers on the training session who have worked "so much more efficiently together."
"So the more (soldiers) we can take (in future training), the better, and I think it's very positive... You feel how effective this was and how much they have learned. That's a very positive thing," Brown said.
Zhang Jian, army commander of the Southern Theater Command of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA), said the military-to-military relationship is an important part of the general China-U.S. relations.
"The Chinese army is committed to developing a healthy and stable relationship between the Chinese and U.S. militaries," he said at the press conference.
The disaster management exchange (DME) between China and the United States aims to share the two armies' experience on humanitarian disaster relief at home and internationally, and to explore new ways for both armies in humanitarian management, he said.
This will help cultivate the common will and capacity of both armies in future cooperation, and deepen their practical international cooperation on non-traditional security challenges, Zhang said.
"Therefore, the DME in this way will not only facilitate our military-to-military relationship, but will also provide a good opportunity to interact positively in the Asia-Pacific region, so that we can continue to work together to safeguard regional peace and stability," he said.
The Chinese and U.S. armies ended their 13th annual China-U.S. Disaster Management Exchange Table Top Exchange (TTE) and practical field training Sunday in Portland, the largest city in Oregon on the western U.S. coast.
At an earlier closing ceremony, Zhang said the exchanges between Chinese and U.S. armies on humanitarian disaster relief and rescue have boosted their mutual trust over the past 20 years.
China and the United States, both as major countries in the world, should work hand in hand to jointly respond to risks and challenges, and make their due contributions to human development, Zhang said.
The Chinese army is willing to work with the U.S. side to deepen their practical cooperation on non-traditional challenges such as humanitarian relief and disaster management, he added.
Brown said on the same occasion that the U.S.-China exchanges on humanitarian disaster management carry vital significance in deepening practical cooperation between China and the United States as well as their militaries.
He expressed hopes that the United States and China will continue their joint efforts to push forward the military-to-military exchanges, academic discussions and practical trainings on humanitarian disaster management, so as to further improve their coordination capabilities in joint response to disaster relief and rescue operations.
Brown said he is confident about closer cooperation between Chinese and U.S. armies in the future.
The week-long training began on Nov. 13 at the Rilea Camp of the Armed Forces Training Facility of the Oregon Army National Guard in Portland.
More than 100 servicemen and servicewomen from the PLA Southern Theater Command, the U.S. Army Pacific, Oregon Army National Guard and other units took part in the training aimed at responding to natural disasters such as floods and earthquakes, in which both armies were requested to provide humanitarian assistance.