12th Army (People's Republic of China)

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12th Group Army
Active 1949–present
Country China
Part of Nanjing Military Region
Garrison/HQ Xuzhou, Jiangsu

The 12th Army, also called the 12th Group Army, is one of three Group Armies assigned to the Nanjing Military Region, Nanjing, Jiangsu, China.[1]


The origin of the 12th Army lies in the surrender of the 74th Division of the Chinese Nationalist National Revolutionary Army, as well as with the sixth column of the Second Field Army.

Civil War[edit]

During the Chinese Civil War (a war between the communist "Red" army and the Chinese national army), the 12th Army was involved in a number of pivotal events in the Shanxi-Hebei-Shandong-Henan border region. On 8 December 1948, the 12th Army, 110,000 men strong, which had been surrounded by communist forces near Pengpu, on the Hwai river line, fell back into strong defensive positions, was aided by air drops, defied the communist commander's orders to surrender and managed to break free.[2]

On 9 February 1949, the 34th, 35th and the 36th Divisions were incorporated into the Twelfth Army.[citation needed] On 29 November 1949, Chongqing was captured and later the Battle of Chengdu was fought.[3]

Korean War[edit]

In December 1950, the 12th Army entered the Korean War. The People's Republic of China's (PRC) 31st Division of the 11th Army was incorporated into the 12th Army. The 11th Army returned to China in 1954.[citation needed]

Late-20th century[edit]

In 1985, the 12th Army was re-formed as a Group Army (field battalion). It was incorporated into the "60 June 179" division. The re-organization also involved the 2nd tank division and an artillery brigade.[citation needed]

In May 1989, the 12th Army's 34th, 36th and 110th Divisions, Artillery Brigade, and Anti-Aircraft Battalion were deployed to Beijing to enforce martial law and suppress the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989.[4]

In 1998, the first 34th division of the 12th Army was re-deployed as a motorised infantry brigade (divorced from the 2nd tank division). The 35th division was moved to the Jiangsu military region. At a later stage, the 36th and the 179th divisions were motorised.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Staff (2000–2012). "Nanjing Military Region Nanjing Military Area Command". GlobalSecurity.org. GlobalSecurity.org. Retrieved 4 June 2012. 
  2. ^ [1] "Pengpu says Suchow forces intact, moving", Wilks, Harold, AP correspondent, Pengpu, The News and Courier, Charleston, S.C. 9 December 1948, Page 1. accessed 8 June 2012.
  3. ^ Sohu (2 November 2005). 军旅采风. laobing.com (in Chinese). laobing.com, Yingpu. Retrieved 4 June 2012. 
  4. ^ Based on Wu Renhua's study. (Chinese)Wu Renhua, "进京的戒严部队和进京路线" 《1989天安门事件二十周年祭》系列之十二 Accessed 29 June 2013