Chinese navy chief, Communist Party leader
Liu Huaqing, 95, the father of the modern Chinese navy, died Friday of an undisclosed illness, state broadcaster CCTV said from Beijing. No other details were given.
Liu commanded the People's Liberation Army Navy from 1982 to 1988 and is credited with revitalizing a coastal patrol force and setting it on course to becoming a powerful navy.
As commander, he laid out a strategy of building an offshore navy capacity by 2000 and a true blue-water navy able to operate far from home ports by 2050. That included the concept of a first, second and third line of island chains through which the navy would gradually expand operations eastward into the Pacific toward Taiwan, the Philippines, Guam and, eventually, Australia.