Photo: CCTVChinese President Xi Jinping wrote back to extend greetings to a plateau-stationed model battalion of People's Liberation Army (PLA) stationed in Xizang (Tibet) region and encouraged them to guard the country's borders well and make new contributions to the Party and the people.
Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, wrote in the letter, "In the past five years, you kept in mind the mission entrusted by the Party and the people, stayed in the forbidden zone of life, guarded the sacred territory of the motherland with youth and blood, and have accomplished your mission brilliantly. Everyone has done a good job!"
Xi noted the border guards are fighting on the frontline of frontier defense, with arduous tasks and heavy responsibilities. "I hope comrades will strengthen your sense of mission, carry forward your good traditions, enhance military training and preparations, faithfully perform your duties of defending the country and defending the border, and strive to make new contributions to the Party and the people," Xi wrote.
According to previous reports, the model battalion received the honor in 2016. The battalion is under the PLA Xizang Military Command.
China Tibet News revealed in 2016 that the Troop Unit 77656 stationed in the border region of Xizang at the northern foot of the Himalayas was awarded the model battalion honor.
The battalion is said to be stationed at the highest altitude among all PLA battalions, according to the report.
Established in 1961, the battalion undertakes border patrol missions for nearly 10 snow-capped mountains with an elevation of more than 5,000 meters and nearly 20 mountain passes to the outside. The five fixed patrol points are all above 5,500 meters, with the highest point 6,900 meters above sea level, the report said, saying they have successfully completed major tasks such as border control, stability maintenance and earthquake relief.