China has established and keeps improving a leadership and administration system for national defense in accordance with the Constitution, the National Defense Law and other relevant laws. The state exercises unified leadership over national defense activities. China's armed forces are under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC). The Central Military Commission (CMC) of the CPC and that of the People's Republic of China (PRC) are completely the same in their composition and in their function of exercising leadership over the armed forces. The CMC chairman has overall responsibility for its work.
The National People's Congress (NPC) elects the chairman of the CMC of the PRC and, upon nomination by the chairman, decides on the choice of all other members of the CMC. The NPC decides on war and peace and exercises other functions and powers relating to national defense as prescribed by the Constitution. When the NPC is in recess, its Standing Committee decides on the proclamation of a state of war, decides on the general or partial mobilization of the country, and exercises other functions and powers relating to national defense as prescribed by the Constitution. The president of the PRC, in pursuance of the decisions of the NPC and its Standing Committee, may proclaim a state of war, issue mobilization orders, and exercise other functions and powers relating to national defense as prescribed by the Constitution.
The State Council directs and administers national defense building in the following areas: making national defense development programs and plans, formulating principles, policies and administrative regulations for defense building, administering defense expenditure and assets, directing and administering national defense scientific research and production, directing and administering work related to mobilization of the national economy, mobilization of people's armed forces, people's air defense and national defense traffic, directing and administering the work of supporting the military and giving preferential treatment to families of servicemen and martyrs, as well as the resettlement of servicemen discharged from active service. It also directs national defense education and, jointly with the CMC, the building of the Chinese People's Armed Police Force (PAPF) and the militia, the work concerning enlistment and reserve service, and the administration of border, coastal and air defenses, and exercises other functions and powers relating to national defense building as prescribed by law. Under the State Council are the Ministry of National Defense (MND) and other departments concerning national defense building.
The CMC directs and exercises unified command of China's armed forces. It has the following functions and powers: deciding on the military strategy and operational guidelines of the armed forces, directing and administering the building of the PLA, submitting proposals related to national defense to the NPC or its Standing Committee, formulating military regulations, issuing decisions and orders, deciding on the structure and organization of the PLA, appointing and removing, training, evaluating, and rewarding and punishing members of the armed forces, approving systems and development programs and plans for weaponry and equipment, and exercising other functions and powers as prescribed by law.
The PLA's General Staff Headquarters, General Political Department, General Logistics Department and General Armaments Department are departments of the CMC respectively responsible for military, political, logistical and equipment work.
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