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Highlights
  • China’s Belt and Road projects in the Middle East come hand-in-hand with a growing security presence meant to protect Chinese citizens and assets, secure China’s access to the region’s energy and resources, and deal with terrorist threats originating in Middle Eastern countries.
  • The PLA’s reform and restructuring continues, with the goal of making the armed forces into a modern, high-tech and internationally competitive force.
  • Beijing’s international security diplomacy is primarily focused on countries along the Belt and Road, and it has an increasingly strong focus on terrorism.
  • China’s force projection activities are mostly focused on military-operations-other-than-war, but Beijing also appears increasingly willing to deploy troops abroad in response to specific threats or conflicts.
  • Chinese officials in the UN attempt to shape debates on issues ranging from Syria to non-proliferation regimes, with mixed results in this time period.