China recruits MMA fighters for Tibet border militia
- Mixed martial arts exponents to form Plateau Resistance Tibetan Mastiffs squad to help train troops in hand-to-hand combat
- Announcement comes after deadly skirmish in Himalayas between Indian and Chinese soldiers
China has enlisted a squad of mixed martial arts fighters into its border militia ranks, according to state media.
The club is known for producing fighters who go on to compete in international tournaments such as the Ultimate Fighting Championship in the United States.
Chinese exercise in Tibet after border clash with India
It was not clear if the Tibetan Mastiffs would be deployed to the border with India but their main mission would be to help border patrol troops and special forces in hand-to-hand combat training, according to a Tencent News report.
“If the country needs us, the Enbo Fight Club will wholeheartedly complete more challenging tasks. As for whether [our fighters] took part in the conflict a few days ago, don’t ask me, I didn’t ask,” club owner En Bo was quoted as saying.
Other militia recruits included civilian personnel specialising in communications technology, mountaineering and mining, the official military newspaper, The PLA Daily, reported. They will come under the People’s Liberation Army’s Western Theatre Command.
Death toll rises to 20 in border clash between India and China
There has been much debate in China over the virtues of the hybrid fighting style of mixed martial arts and the traditional Chinese kung fu approach to combat.
But Xu has since disappeared from the Chinese internet, censored for his controversial antics and his initial favourable view of anti-government protests in Hong Kong last year.