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China's army eases curbs to draw more educated recruits

Published on Jun 17, 2014 11:17 AM
Soldiers from the honour guards of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) march in front of the Monument to the People's Heroes at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, on June 3, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

SHANGHAI (REUTERS) - China's military is setting its sights on better educated entrants, relaxing height, weight and vision requirements while cutting back on candidates without high school diplomas, the China Daily said on Tuesday.

China has the world's biggest military, with 2.3 million men and women in uniform, and its defence spending is second only to that of the United States.

In the past decade it has kicked off an ambitious modernisation drive, developing new weapons systems and upgrading the force.

The People's Liberation Army has lowered the minimum height requirement for recruits, raised the maximum weight limit, reduced eyesight standards and even begun taking on recruits with once-taboo tattoos, the English-language newspaper quoted the Defense Ministry's recruitment office as saying.

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