An article in the Epoch Times (April 4) stated that since the CCP came to power, its military academy has trained six presidents, eight defense ministers, more than 100 commanders, and a large number of military personnel for Africa. It listed five presidents and former presidents of African countries as having graduated from the CCP’s Nanjing Army Command College namely: Samuel Nujoma, the founding president of Namibia; Jakaya Kikwete, fourth president of Tanzania; Laurent Kabila, third president of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC); Isaias Afwerki, the first and current president of Eritrea; and Joao Vieira, the former president of Guinea-Bissau. It noted that between 1964 and 1985 under Mao’s policy of “free aid,” the CCP sent 3,418 military experts in 226 envoys to 19 African countries, including Algeria, Tanzania, Congo, Zambia, and Mali. The CCP trained 17,000 soldiers, received 3,022 military trainees, and sent farming, engineering, and medical teams to assist those countries in building industrial and infrastructure projects. Weapons sales supplented these efforts and SIPRI figures show that during 2016-2020, 16 percent of China’s arms exports went to Africa, while during 2014-2018, Africa accounted for 20 percent of China’s arms export. The quality and sophistication of weapons sold has increased after Xi Jinping took over power with the Xiaolong combat aircraft (also Joint Fighter-17 Thunder), different models of escort vessels, multiple rocket launchers firing large-caliber rockets, and the Rainbow and Wing Loong series of unmanned aerial vehicles being exported to Africa.

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