Troop Cut to Save Money, Deng Says
Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping has said that a plan to cut 1 million men from the armed forces is designed to save money, the semiofficial China News Service said today.
Deng confirmed to visiting Burmese leader Ne Win the announcement of the cut by Communist Party leader Hu Yaobang, the news agency said.
Hu surprised many foreign military experts when he said in New Zealand on April 19 that China will demobilize 1 million troops from an army believed to be about 4 million strong.
Some diplomats had said they believed that China announced the manpower cut to signal willingness to defuse military tension with Vietnam and to affirm its intention not to be a military threat to the Soviet Union.