China has finally made the step from offering moral, political and humanitarian support for Syria to lending physical help to its military
Chinese defense ministry announced the Chinese military will train Syrian army personnel on Chinese soil:
"The Chinese military will provide the Syrian side with medical and nursing professional training," defence ministry spokesman Wu Qian told reporters at a monthly briefing.
The training would take place in China, he added, and was intended "to ease the humanitarian crisis in Syria".
The Chinese military has already provided Syrian authorities with medical equipment and medicines "to help reduce the humanitarian suffering of the Syrian people," Qian said.
"For a long period of time, China and Syria have helped each other. And China has been pushing for a political solution of the Syrian conflict and we have always supported the independence of Syria," he added.
For now this will be training for army medics and nurses alone, but another landmark has been crossed. It means China has gone from only offering moral, political and humanitarian support for Syria in its war against foreign-sponsored jihadist rebellion to lending physical help to its military.