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Chinese army donates uniform to BDF

By Kgotsofalang Botsang

GABORONE - The Chinese Peoples Liberation Army has donated uniform worth about P4 million to the Botswana Defence Force (BDF).

Accepting the donation on behalf of the BDF, the Minister of Defence, Justice and Security, Brig. Dikgakgamatso Seretse, said the donation marked another chapter in relations between the two countries.

Brig. Seretse noted that the relationship had its beginnings in the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in 1975.

He added that Botswana benefited from Chinese assistance in all spheres, be it economics, agriculture, education and in the military field.

He said the signing of a protocol between the Chinese Peoples Liberation Army and the BDF in Beijing last year strengthened the already existing cordial ties between the two countries.

“I am also informed that besides this assistance, the BDF has also been given numerous training slots in China,” he said.

Presenting the uniform, the Chinese Ambassador to Botswana, Mr Ding Xiaoweng, said China, just like Botswana, was a peace-loving country, adding that Chinese per capita military spending was among the lowest in the world.

He said China cut its military force by 70 per cent in the past 30 years. “It is against this background that China has donated the uniform.”

Mr Ding said the donation was solicited by the BDF Commander Lt Gen. Tebogo Masire.

“It really surprised me that he was interested in uniform and not cannons, missiles or atomic bombs,” said the ambassador. BOPA

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