China issued its first white paper on military strategy on Tuesday, stressing the "active defense" guideline and pledging closer international security cooperation.
The white paper, "China's Military Strategy", issued by the State Council Information Office, outlined a strategy that adheres to the unity of strategic defense and operational and tactical offense.
The nearly 9,000-word paper also underscored "the principles of defense, self-defense and post-emptive strikes", adding that China "will not attack unless we are attacked, but we will surely counterattack if attacked".
In response to the evolving form of modern warfare and national security requirements, more focus will be placed on "winning informationized local wars".
"The adjustment is necessary as long-range, precise, smart, stealthy and unmanned weapons and equipment are becoming increasingly sophisticated, and outer space and cyberspace have become new command posts," said Yan Wenhu, a researcher with the Academy of Military Science (AMS) of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA).
The armed forces will get better at operations based on information technology, the paper said.
They will also strengthen international security cooperation in areas considered especially important to China's overseas interests.
The paper goes on to highlight four "critical security domains", including the ocean, outer space, cyberspace and nuclear force.
The PLA Navy will gradually shift its focus from the sole strategy of "offshore waters defense" to the combined one of "offshore waters defense [and] open seas protection".
The country will expedite the development of its cyber force to tackle "grave security threats" within the digital realm.
China opposes weaponization and arms race in outer space and vowed to secure its space assets.
The paper also underscored that China will never enter into a nuclear arms race with any other country and pledged to continue to contribute to world peace.