Li Zuocheng
Li in 2019
Chief of the CMC Joint Staff Department
In office
August 2017 – October 2022
CMC ChairmanXi Jinping
Preceded byFang Fenghui
Succeeded byLiu Zhenli
Commander of the PLA Ground Force
In office
January 2016 – August 2017
Preceded byPosition created
Succeeded byHan Weiguo
Commander of Chengdu Military Region
In office
August 2013 – January 2016
Preceded byLi Shiming
Succeeded byPosition abolished
Personal details
BornOctober 1953 (age 70)
Anhua County, Hunan, China
Political partyChinese Communist Party
AwardsMerit of the First Class
Military service
Allegiance People's Republic of China
Branch/service People's Liberation Army Ground Force
Years of service1970–2022
Rank General
CommandsCMC Joint Staff Department,
PLA Ground Force,
Chengdu Military Region,
41st Group Army
Battles/warsSino-Vietnamese War

Li Zuocheng (Chinese: 李作成; pinyin: Lǐ Zuóchéng; born October 1953) is a former general of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) of China. He was chief of the Joint Staff Department of the Central Military Commission from 2017 to 2022. Between 2015 and 2017, he served as the inaugural Commander of the PLA Ground Force. A veteran of the Sino-Vietnamese War, he served in southern China for most of his career and was commander of the Chengdu Military Region between 2013 and 2016.[1]


Li Zuocheng was born in October 1953 in Anhua County, Hunan. He joined the PLA in 1970 at the age of 17.[2]

In 1978, Li fought in the Sino-Vietnamese War as a company commander in the Guangxi Military District. His unit fought a lengthy engagement with the Vietnamese army that lasted 26 days. He was injured in battle. His unit was named by the Central Military Commission and awarded merit of the first class. In 1982, Li was selected to sit in the Presidium (主席团) of the 12th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party at age 29.[3]

Li Zuocheng became a division commander by 1994. His division helped in relief efforts of the Guangxi floods in the summer of 1994, and the entire division was awarded merit of the second class. He was promoted to the rank of major general in 1997.[3]

In 1998, 45-year-old Li Zuocheng succeeded Ou Jingu (欧金谷) as Commander of the 41st Group Army. He commanded the 41st Army in the relief efforts of the great Yangtze floods of that year.[3]

Li was appointed Deputy Chief of Staff of the Guangzhou Military Region in 2002. Even though this was technically a lateral move, the transfer was seen as a 'sidelining' of Li, because he was no longer serving on the frontline of command. In December 2007, he was transferred to the Chengdu Military Region and became its Deputy Commander. He attained the rank of lieutenant general in 2009. In August 2013, he was promoted to Commander of the Chengdu Military Region, replacing the retiring general Li Shiming.[3]

On 31 July 2015, Li Zuocheng was promoted to general (shangjiang), alongside nine other officers by Central Military Commission chairman Xi Jinping.[4] After the PLA's re-organization in late 2015, Li was named the inaugural commander of the People's Liberation Army Ground Force.[5]

In August 2017, Li was named by Xi Jinping Chief of the Joint Staff Department of the Central Military Commission.[6]

On 30 May 2020, as the twin national security legislation for Hong Kong and National Anthem Bill for Hong Kong affairs startled the world, Li Zuocheng said that the Chinese government would "resolutely smash" any separatist moves by Taiwan. He spoke at the 15th anniversary of the Anti-Secession Law that gives the PLA a legal basis to take military action against China’s dissentient.[7]


  1. ^ Zhang Jianfeng (2 January 2016). "China inaugurates PLA Rocket Force as military reform deepens". CCTV. Archived from the original on 27 August 2017. Retrieved 2 January 2016.
  2. ^ "Li Zuocheng" (in Chinese). Phoenix New Media. 27 August 2013. Archived from the original on 1 July 2017. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d 李作成升任成都军区司令员 [Li Zuocheng promoted to Commander of the Chengdu Military Region]. Caixin (in Chinese). 6 August 2013. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
  4. ^ "China promotes 10 officers to general". Xinhua. 2015-07-31. Archived from the original on July 31, 2015.
  5. ^ 李作成出任解放军陆军司令员 刘雷任陆军政委. Sina. Retrieved 2016-01-01.
  6. ^ 中央军委联合参谋部参谋长李作成会见巴基斯坦陆军参谋长. (in Chinese). 2017-08-26.
  7. ^ Minnie Chan (30 May 2020). "Chinese general says Beijing will 'resolutely smash' any separatist moves by Taiwan". South China Morning Post.
Military offices Preceded byMeng Jinxi Deputy Commander of Chengdu Military Region 2007–2013 Succeeded byYang Jinshan Preceded byLi Shiming Commander of Chengdu Military Region 2013–2015 Succeeded byPosition revoked New title Commander of the People's Liberation Army Ground Force 2015–2017 Succeeded byHan Weiguo Preceded byFang Fenghui Chief of the Joint Staff Department of the Central Military Commission 2017–2022 Succeeded byLiu Zhenli