World

China pledges to cut 300,000 troops from its 2.3 million-member army, amid technology advances

Chinese President Xi Jinping has pledged a reduction of 300,000 troops from China's 2.3 million-member People's Liberation Army, amid rising personnel costs and growing technological capabilities that reduce the need for large numbers of troops.

The announcement Thursday at the start of a massive parade commemorating Japan's World War II defeat 70 years ago brings the military's headcount down to about 2 million.

Once known for its human wave tactics in conflicts such as the Korean War, the PLA is increasingly focused on high-tech weaponry and more focused missions.

As an example, the latest version of the PLA's mainstay bomber, the H-6K, requires just a three-person crew, half its former complement.