Li Na in contention for Laureus award

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING

>>  Chinese navy succeeds in 1st overseas evacuation mission for foreigners

By Zhu Junqing

With 225 foreign nationals arrived in Djibouti aboard Linyi missile frigate this week, the Chinese navy completed its first overseas evacuation operation for foreign nationals.

The special rescue effort by the Chinese government to evacuate foreign citizens embody the government’s people-first principle and the spirit of internationalism and humanitarianism, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a press briefing on Friday of April 3.

Linyi missile frigate, carrying 225 people from 10 countries — Pakistan, Ethiopia, Singapore, Italy, Germany, Poland, Ireland, Britain, Canada and Yemen — departed Yemen for Djibouti before noon on Thursday and arrived after nearly eight hours of sailing.

In the group, 176 people are from Pakistan, 29 from Ethiopia, five from Singapore, four from Poland, three each from Italy and Germany, two from Britain, one each from Canada, Ireland and Yemen.

Mudassir Waseem, a 13-year-old Pakistani, told Xinhua aboard Linyi that he could not restrain his delight for going back home.

On Friday, the 176 Pakistani nationals arrived in Islamabad aboard a Pakistan International Airlines plane.

A Pakistani evacuee known as Nawaz told Xinhua upon arrival that “I have had a hard time in Yemen … I want to thank China for its help in evacuating non-Chinese people … China has proved again with its action that we are friends and brothers.”

The 48-year-old man, who has been working in Yemen’s capital of Sanaa for 15 years, missed the Pakistani evacuation on Sunday.

“When I saw the (Pakistani) plane leaving, I felt desperate,” he said, “but when I know the Chinese military vessel may come to the Port of Aden, I was excited though I’m not sure at that time whether the Chinese vessel would receive foreigners or not.”

“But I believe China will help us this time, as the old friend has always done before,” he said.

“As all-weather friends, Pakistan and Chinese cooperation in ensuring safe evacuation of our citizens has also been exemplary,” Pakistani Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Tasnim Aslam said Friday.

“To ensure earliest possible evacuation, we enlisted Chinese support, since their ships were already in the region evacuating their nationals from Aden to Djibouti,” she said.

Poland, Singapore and other countries have also expressed their gratitude to China for providing assistance in evacuating their nationals from Yemen.

“The evacuation of Polish citizens from Yemen was possible thanks to effective and efficient cooperation of Polish diplomacy representatives and their Chinese counterparts,” said an official statement.

Chinese warships have also helped evacuate eight nationals of Romania, India and Egypt while evacuating Chinese citizens.

More than 500 Chinese evacuees from conflict-ridden Yemen have arrived at the Djibouti port.

The first group of 122 Chinese nationals were evacuated from the Yemeni city of Aden and arrived in Djibouti on Sunday night onboard Linyi, which also took two foreign employees of Chinese enterprises.

The Weifang missile frigate and Weishanhu supply ship evacuated 449 Chinese nationals and six foreign employees of Chinese enterprises in Yemen’s Port of Hodeidah on Monday and have arrived at the Port of Djibouti.

The fleet was on an escort mission in the Gulf of Aden when it was ordered to carry out the evacuation. The three Chinese naval ships now have returned to the Gulf of Aden and waters off Somalia to continue the escort mission.

Security sharply deteriorated in Yemen since early March when conflicts erupted in several provinces in the country’s southern regions.

The Shiite Houthi group launched attacks on Aden city, which President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi declared as temporary capital after he fled weeks of house arrest by the Houthis in Sanaa.

A Saudi-led coalition started airstrikes on Houthi targets in Sanaa and other cities, saying the multinational action was to protect Hadi’s legitimacy and force the Houthis to retreat from cities it seized since September 2014.

 

 

 

 

 

 

NAIROBI

>>  Chinese NGOs condemn terrorist attack at Garissa University in Kenya

By Ding Xiaoxi

Two Chinese NGOs, Kenya China Economic and Trade Association, and Kenya Overseas Chinese Association, issued a statement on Friday of April 3, condemning the terrorist attack at Garissa University College.

“We are extremely shocked to hear that a terrorist attack occurred at Garissa University College on 2 April, during which the terrorists brutally and ruthlessly shot at innocent students in a country whose people always love peace,” the statement said, adding that such savage act must be strongly condemned.

“We express our heartfelt sorrow and deep condolences to the victims and bereaved families, and wish the injured recover soon. We firmly believe that the Kenyan government and people have every capacity to cope with the situation,” it continued.

The NGOs said they want to “reassure all Kenyan brothers and sisters that all Chinese companies and nationals in Kenya are standing shoulder by shoulder with them through this most difficult time”, adding that they are willing and ready to offer help.

“We firmly support the Kenyan government and people to fight terrorism and safeguard national security,” the statement said.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ULAN BATOR

>>  Mongolia apologizes for attack on Chinese tourists by neo-Nazi group

By Ma Mengli

Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj said here on Friday of April 3 that extreme nationalism is harmful, and Mongolia should be a responsible, friendly and open country.

He said this in response to a recent incident in which an extremist group in Mongolia attacked and insulted several Chinese tourists.

On March 28, several Chinese citizens were attacked by a Mongolian neo-Nazi group known as Khukh Mongol (Blue Mongolia) while traveling on the Burkhan Khaldun mountain in Khentii province, eastern Mongolia.

The extremists forced one of the Chinese tourists to kneel down.

The Chinese tourists, all of whom have already returned to China, neither contacted the Chinese Embassy nor went to the local police after the incident.

However, relevant pictures and video clips were uploaded to the Internet, drawing wide attention of the Mongolian society and media.

Ulan Bator’s Mayor Erdene Bat-Uul on Thursday offered an official apology for what had happened to the Chinese tourists, pledging to hold the perpetrators accountable.

“I officially apologize to the Chinese citizens for the immoral behavior” of the extremists, Bat-Uul said.

The mayor said he felt ashamed for what had happened, which was in violation of Mongolia’s Constitution and criminal law.

In a public speech Friday, President Elbegdorj appeared to approve with the mayor’s apology.

The Chinese Embassy in Mongolia Thursday lodged solemn representations with Mongolia, condemning the incident which violated the personal dignity and safety of the Chinese citizens and demanding those responsible be brought to justice.

The embassy also demanded that Mongolia make more efforts to protect the Chinese citizens in the country, and ensure a safe work and living environment for them.

In recent years, a number of neo-Nazi groups have appeared in Mongolia, espousing ultranationalism and harboring hatred for foreigners.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING 

>>  China identifies more Chinese, US pilots killed in anti-Japanese invasion war

By Huang Jiang and Jiang Fang

Ahead of the 70th anniversary of the World War II victory, 990 newly identified aviation martyrs will have their names and stories engraved for commemoration.

Among them, 586 were Chinese and 404 were Americans, according to the Nanjing Anti-Japanese Aviation Martyrs Memorial Hall in east China’s Jiangsu Province.

The addition brings the number of martyrs honored in the museum to 4,295. They include 2,601 Americans, who account for more than 6 out of 10 of known martyrs, while 1,456 were Chinese, 236 were Russian, and two were Korean.

During World War II, air forces from China, the United States, and the Soviet Union fought together against the Japanese invaders in China. They made outstanding contributions to the victories in the Anti-Japanese Aggression War and the world Anti-Fascist War.

The museum has been collecting information about the martyrs, including their names, ranks or titles, places of origin, dates of birth and death, military exploits, and cause of death.

The memorial hall, first built as a public cemetery for aviation martyrs in 1932, has received more than 600,000 visitors since it was opened to the public in 2009.

Chi Pang-yuan from Taiwan, author of Great-Flowing River, a lengthy autobiography published in 2009, visited the public cemetery in 1999 while traveling in Nanjing. On one of the black marble tablets, she found the name of her first love, Zhang Dafei, 56 years after they last saw each other.

The museum will continue looking for more martyrs and will set up archives for each of them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

WASHINGTON

>>  Shift in foreign investment in China in line with rebalancing efforts

By Jiang Yujuan

As some foreign companies are closing down their factories in China, concerns also grow that foreign investors are massively leaving China.

Such worries, though containing some legitimacy, were overblown as a breakdown of foreign direct investment data showed that the labor-intensive manufacturing sector sees less investment, while foreign investment in the service sector still registers strong growth, analysts said.

The shift is in line with China’s economic rebalancing efforts – - steering itself away from an export-reliant economy toward one driven by domestic consumption, they added.

Foreign companies originally went to China because they considered China as part of the global production chain as well as a platform to export elsewhere, Scott Kennedy, deputy director of the Freeman Chair in China Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), told Xinhua.

Due to rising labor costs and other reasons, companies that are most sensitive to rising production cost in China are potentially considering moving elsewhere, said Kennedy.

According to a survey conducted by the American Chamber of Commerce in China, 15 percent of its member companies have moved or are planning to move capacity or investments outside of China in 2014, due to high labor costs.

He Fan, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social Science, held a similar view and told Xinhua that labor-intensive industries in China are facing challenges due to rising labor cost pressures.

Along with China rebalancing to consumption-led and service- focused growth model, foreign investments which are in line with the rebalancing trend will continue to gain growth momentum, while those that cannot adapt to the trend will consider leaving, said the researcher.

The official data also spoke of the same story.

According to China’s Ministry of Commerce, foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows to China’s service sector grew 30 percent year on year in the first two months of this year and their share in the total FDI inflows reached 61 percent. On the contrary, the FDI inflows to China’s manufacturing sector grew at a smaller pace of 7.1 percent and only accounted for 33.3 percent of the total FDI inflows to China.

A research by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development found that FDI inflows to China in 2014 were mainly driven by an increase in those to the service sector, while FDI to the manufacturing sector fell, especially in industries that are sensitive to rising labor costs.

Although some companies are withdrawing investment from China, most American companies are continuing doing business in China, because of the potential of the Chinese market and their need to be close to their customers, said Kennedy.

A recent CSIS report said that after 35 years of rapid growth, China has become the largest economy in Asia and will soon be the largest in the world by any measure, and no other economy will have more impact on U.S. growth and prosperity over the coming decades.

But given the size and the importance of the Chinese market, the likelihood of foreign companies massively abandoning China for producing elsewhere is very unlikely, said Kennedy.

In regard to China-U.S. bilateral investment relationship, Kenneth Liberthal, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, said the big thing that is going to change the future is bilateral investment treaty (BIT) that the two sides are negotiating on, especially whether China could open up high value-added services to foreign investors.

Kennedy believed that the BIT will benefit both economies and investors from both countries.

 

 

 

 

 

 

MILAN

>>  Tiremaker Pirelli CEO eyes sound growth, clean technology with ChemChina

By Marzia de Giuli

Industrial business and clean technology are the plans in the mind of Pirelli CEO Marco Tronchetti Provera days after the signing of an agreement that paves the way for China National Chemical Corporation (ChemChina)’s takeover of the Italian tiremaker.

In a recent interview with Xinhua held at the headquarters of 140-year-old Pirelli in Milan, Tronchetti Provera highlighted the strategic value of the operation.

“It is an agreement between ChemChina and Camfin (the holding company that controls Pirelli) based on cooperation in the industrial tire business,” the CEO told Xinhua.

He predicted a solid future with the Chinese partner, adding he does not see the possibility that other players could join.

“We chose each other because of a common interest,” Tronchetti Provera went on saying. He said ChemChina has a strong presence in China but needs higher level of technology to keep pace with the market’s rapid development. On the other side, Pirelli has the technology and a global footprint.

As a result of the takeover, Pirelli, that is focused on the premium segment with 20 percent of market share, will double its capacity in the industrial business.

“We will become a global player able to face competition in the next years and deliver advanced technology to China,” he said.

“I see that we can accelerate the process of innovation of products in China and also create a new business model based on retreading of the tires to have the carcasses last 130,000 km instead than 40,000 km,” the CEO elaborated.

“That means that we deliver environment-friendly and less costly products to fleets, and create new jobs, Tronchetti Provera, who based on the agreement will remain CEO of Pirelli until 2021, explained to Xinhua.

“I think ChemChina is the right partner to guarantee the independent future of Pirelli,” he pointed out.

In fact Pirelli used to be a takeover target with “big eyes around that could have had an interest in buying and splitting the company,” he noted. “With ChemChina we will have a business model that is more sound,” he insisted.

The agreement was the fruit of a dialogue with ChemChina that first started three years ago.

“We shared our views on the future of our industry. But at the time there were some complexities so we did not go ahead. Then we met again last October. We restarted talking and we shared the same vision, we imagined how to build this venture,” the CEO recalled.

The experience was no doubt positive.

“I had the chance to meet an entrepreneur, Ren Jianxin (Chairman of ChemChina) who has a really modern, updated approach to economy. I saw a very open China that wants to be part of the global world … I saw that all what we agreed was consistent with the outcome of our agreement,” he said.

In response to the concern expressed in Italy for the latest in a series of acquisitions by Chinese investors in recent years, Tronchetti Provera called on his beloved home country to seizing the opportunities brought by global flows of capital.

“I think in the last decades our leaders did not see as a priority to have the industrial structure of the country becoming sounder and bigger. In Italy there was the myth that small is beautiful, I can say that big is even better because also provides opportunities to small companies,” he noted.

In his view, Italy has to be able to keep and protect its know-how and human resources but at the same time provide large access to foreign capital.

“I can say that in my experience the approach of a Chinese State-owned company has been very fair … ChemChina has been respectful of our roots and technology and has helped guaranteeing that the technology will remain within Pirelli and the headquarters in Italy,” he underlined.

“We have been able to combine the priorities of both groups and are working hard at the same side of the table willing to build a better future both for ChemChina and Pirellib … so it is a win-win cooperation and this approach I think can be replicated in other cases,” he concluded.

 

 

 

 

 

 

SYDNEY

>>  Australia to host golf tourney co-sanctioned by China

Australian women’s golf has launched a new professional tournament co-sanctioned with China LPGA.

The inaugural Australia Classic will be played at Sydney’s Twin Creeks Golf and Country Club from April 17-19.

Twenty five players from the China LPGA will fly in to vie with 25 ALPG Tour players and four sponsor invitees in the 150,000 AUD (114,500 US dollars) tournament.

“This is a landmark occasion for the ALPG, teaming up for the first time with the China LPGA Tour in a co-sanctioned event,” said ALPG CEO Karen Lunn.

“The Chinese players are really making their mark on the world stage and the China LPGA Tour is growing rapidly and producing some outstanding young players.

“We look forward to a long and successful working relationship with the CLPGA and our hosts at the outstanding Twin Creeks Golf and Country Club.”

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott recognized CLPGA’s reputation and hailed the new tournament as “a testament to the close relationships” between two countries.

“Since it was established in 2008 the China LPGA Tour has developed a strong international reputation,” Abbot said in his message to the tournament.

“It is one of the world’s fastest-growing golf circuits and will this year bring together some of the top female players in the world and rising young stars.

“As it enters its seventh season, Australia is proud to be the first overseas host of a tournament on the China LPGA Tour.”

The prime minister quoted Chinese President Xi Jinping while reiterating the importance of cooperation in raising golf standard.

“As President Xi said during his visit to Australia last year: ‘if you want to walk fast, walk alone’, but ‘if you want to walk far, walk together’,” he said.

“The potential for our relationship to grow and prosper has never been greater, and I hope this event marks the start of many years of collaboration between the golfing associations of Australia and China.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING

>>  Book published on Chinese antiquities in British museum

By Tian Ying

A book recording Chinese antiquities collected by the London-based Victoria and Albert Museum has been published, the National Museum of China (NMC) said on Saturday of April 4.

The book, compiled mainly by the NMC, is the first volume of a book series documenting Chinese antiquities in overseas collections. The first volume is the product of ten years of work.

The NMC decided in 2005 to start compiling the book series, which consists of 20 to 30 volumes. The series covers the status of Chinese antiquities collected overseas and international academic research on the items.

The Victoria and Albert Museum volume features a total of 195 exquisite antiquities, including 102 pieces of china, 31 bronze items, 22 painted wood pieces, as well as gold, silver and jade treasures.

The book provides the background and history of each artifact.

Other editions in the series will be published later, but no publication timetable is available yet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

SHANGHAI

>>  Li Na in contention for Laureus award

By Ma Xiangfei

Retired Chinese tennis star Li Na will be up against Serena Williams in a six-woman field for sportswoman of the year in the Laureus World Sports Awards.

The other nominees are Valerie Adams, Marit Bjorgen, Genzebe Dibaba and Tina Maze.

In the men’s field, Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo will compete against number one golfer Rory McIlroy and Formula One motor racing champion Lewis Hamilton.

Also in the race are tennis world number one Novak Djokovic and World MotoGP title-holder Marc Marquez, as well as France’s Renaud Lavillenie, who broke a 21-year-old world record for the pole vault last year.

Ronaldo’s club, Spain’s Real Madrid, is in the running for team of the year, together with the German men’s team which won the FIFA World Cup, European Ryder Cup team, Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One team, NBA’s San Antonio Spurs and Switzerland Davis Cup team.

The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony in Shanghai on April 15.

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING

>>  ’Child of stars’ pictures Olympic dream

By Ma Xiangfei

He may not talk to you, he may not even listen to you, but he has a knack for communication — paint.

Liu Yi, 15, who suffers from autism, expresses what he feels and thinks on paintings. Most recently, he “said” he is excited about a possible Winter Olympic Games in China.

“Shen’ao,” Liu could mumble the two words meaning “bidding for the Olympics”.

He drew ski jumpers, snowboarders, hockey players at the Olympics and wheelchair curlers at the Winter Paralympics.

In another painting, Liu mixed Chinese traditional zodiac of 12 animals with the Olympic sports.

Liu is among a very small group of talented autistic children while much more children with autism are shut in their own worlds, having difficulty communicating and interacting.

A Beijing volunteer posted Liu’s works on website on the 8th World Autism Awareness Day which fell on Thursday, drawing huge attention to the “children of stars”.

In China, more than 13 million people suffering from autism, including an estimated 1.8 million children, while worldwide autism has an incidence of between one and two percent worldwide.

 

 

 

 

 

 

TAIPEI

>>  One mainland student drowns in east Taiwan

By Chen Siwu

A university student from the Chinese mainland was found drowned off the coast of eastern Taiwan’s Hualien County on Saturday, police said.

The female student, identified as 22-year-old Liu Xinying, was studying at Taipei University of the Arts.

Liu was swept away by rogue waves near the Qingshui Cliff at around noon, her two companions told police.

At least three drownings were reported in Taiwan since the beginning of the four-day Tomb Sweeping Festival weekend, as students and tourists flocked to the seaside for vocation amid hot weather.

One person died Friday and another died Saturday at the scenic Chisingtan Beach in Hualien, according to police.

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING

>>  China to standardize energy conservation by 2020 

By Tian Ying

China will put in place a system of conservation standards to cap energy consumption for all major energy-intensive industries by 2020, according to a circular issued by the State Council, China’s cabinet, on Saturday of April 4.

According to the circular on boosting work to standardize energy conservation, 80 percent of the country’s energy efficiency standards should be on par with international standards in the same time frame.

The circular requires governments at all levels to invest more in research and personnel training for standardizing energy conservation.

It pointed out the current standards have limited coverage and are outdated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING

>>  Chinese railways embrace passenger flocks for tomb-sweeping day

By Zhu Shaobin and Qi Zhongxi

Chinese railways recorded nearly 8.7 million trips on Friday of April 3, one day before a three-day holiday to mark the traditional Tomb-Sweeping Day which falls on April 5 this year.

Railway stations in megacities of Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou were the busiest, registering more than 3.8 million departures on Friday, according to data released by the China Railway Corporation.

The company forecast railway trips will exceed 10 million on Saturday.

The Tomb-Sweeping Day is a traditional occasion when Chinese mourn late family members.

Apart from tomb-sweeping, Chinese also use this occasion to conduct sightseeing excursions as warm spring encourages outdoor activities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING

>>  Less than 50 pct of China’s dead cremated in 2014

By Tian Ying

Of the 9.77 million Chinese who died in 2014, 4.46 million, or 45.6 percent, were cremated, the Ministry of Civil Affairs (MCA) announced on Saturday of April 4.

The world’s most populous nation is promoting eco-friendly burial and funeral practices ahead of the traditional Qingming holiday, when Chinese pay respect to deceased family members.

In China, burial is popular due to the traditional belief that bodies have to be kept intact.

The MCA is encouraging people to choose land-saving and eco-friendly burials, including scattering ashes around trees and flowers or into the ocean.

The MCA has also vowed to work with price and commerce authorities to regulate burial service fees.

 

 

 

 

 

 

NANJING

>>  Police investigate child abuse case in east China

By Zhong Qun and Zhu Guoliang

Police in an east China city are looking into allegations that a couple have severely abused their adopted child.

Police in Nanjing City, Jiangsu Province, said in a statement on Saturday of Arpil 4 that the couple in Nanjing were suspected of severely beating up the child, surnamed Shi.

The statement said that the boy’s teacher alerted police on Thursday when the nine-year-old showed up in school with severe bruises on his body.

Pictures circulated on the internet show bruises in the child’s back, legs, arms, belly and feet.

An investigation is under way, said the Nanjing police.

Last month, a six-year-old girl in Yiwu City, east China’s Zhejiang Province, was allegedly beaten to death by her mother during a “family dispute”, triggering calls for better protective measures for minors.

Of the 697 child abuse cases exposed by the media from 2008 to 2013, 74.75 percent were committed by parents, the Beijing Youth Legal Assistance Research Center revealed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING

>>  China’s transport investment surges 17 pct in Jan.-Feb.

By Zhu Shaobin

China invested 176.3 billion yuan (28.7 billion U.S. dollars) on construction of railways, roads and waterways in the first two months of 2015, up 16.9 percent year on year, latest data revealed.

In break-up, railways investment during the period hit 46.2 billion yuan, up 8.2 percent; roads investment stood at 116.4 billion yuan, up 15.9 percent while waterways investment reached 13 billion yuan, up 85.5 percent year on year, according to data released Friday by the Ministry of Transport.

The ministry said the sharp rise in waterway investment in the first two months was due to a low base in the same period last year.

The data also showed that the nation’s railways, roads, and waterways recorded 3.67 billion passenger trips in the Jan.-Feb. period, down 2.9 percent year on year. The ministry did not specify reasons to the decline, but said road trips declined the most, dropping 3.5 percent year on year.

Meanwhile, the volume of freight transport during the period hit 5.96 billion tonnes, up 9.2 percent year on year, the data showed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING 

>>  Chinese airports see 10 pct rise in passenger trips last year

By Zhu Shaobin

Passenger arrivals and departures recorded at Chinese airports hit 831.5 million in 2014, representing a rise of 10.2 percent year on year, official data has revealed.

More than 760.6 million trips were recorded for domestic routes, up 10.1 percent year on year; this was comared to 70.9 million trips for international routes, up 11.7 percent, according to data released by the Civil Aviation Administration of China on Friday of Arpil 3.

Airports in the three megacities of Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou accounted for 28.3 percent of all those trips last year, the data revealed.

The Beijing Capital International Airport became the nation’s busiest airport, registering more than 86.1 million trips in 2014, up 2.9 percent.

Meanwhile, total cargo throughput at Chinese airports hit 13.6 million tonnes, up 7.8 percent year on year.

The CAAC data also showed the number of aiports based in the mainland hit 202 as of the end of 2014, with 200 offering regular flights.

 

 

 

 

 

 

LANZHOU 

>>  12 killed as farm vehicle overturns in NW China

By Zhong Qun and Jiang Weichao

A farm vehicle overturned in northwest China’s Gansu Province on Saturday of Arpil 4, killing 12 people and injuring four others, local authorities said.

The accident happened at around 2:20 p.m., when the vehicle rolled over in Kangle County, Linxia Hui Autonomous Prefecture. Seven were killed on the spot, and five others died when they were being rushed to hospital, the local government said.

The injured are receiving treatment in hospital, and investigation is under way.

 

 

 

 

 

 

LANZHOU

>>  3 killed, 19 injured as bus overturns in NW China

By Zhong Qun and Jiang Weichao

A coach bus overturned in northwest China’s Gansu Province on Saturday of Arpil 4, killing three and injuring 19 others, local authorities said.

The bus with 23 people on board rolled over on a highway in Yongchang County at around 8 a.m.. It was heading from Zhangye City to the city of Wuwei in Gansu.

The injured have been rushed to hospital, and investigation is under way.

 

 

 

 

 

 

NANCHANG/CHANGSHA 

>>  Hail, downpours affect central, east China

By Zhong Qun, Wu ZhongHaoa and Zhou Nan

Floods caused by hail and downpours have damaged crops and halted traffic in central and east China, with hundreds of thousands of people affected.

In central China’s Hunan Province, hail and storms since Friday evening have damaged 292,000 mu (19,467 hectares) of crops in 52 villages and towns. Of the 239,500 people affected, 12,100 have been evacuated as of 6 p.m. on Saturday of Arpil 4.

Heavy downpours have flooded houses in Yueyang City in northern part of Hunan, trapping some local residents. Some roads were also flooded, with many vehicles stuck.

More rain is forecasted in the following few days, according to Hunan’s provincial meteorological bureau.

In the eastern Jiangxi Province, heavy rain has battered 54 cities and counties as of 6 p.m. Saturday, with some towns flooded and a highway landslide reported on Saturday afternoon. Icy roads have caused several bus accidents in the province.

No casualties have been reported so far.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING

>>  Heavy rain to continue in south China

By Xu Feng

The heavy rain battering south China is set to continue during the three-day Tomb-Sweeping Day holiday, China’s weather observatory said on Saturday of Arpil 4.

Heavy rain will hit parts of the provinces of Hunan, Jiangxi, Anhui, Jiangsu, Hubei and Sichuan, as well as Tibet Autonomous Region from Saturday to Sunday, the National Meteorological Center (NMC) said.

Thunderstorm and hail are also expected in some of the regions.

From Sunday to Monday, heavy rain will continue in parts of the provinces of Hubei, Hunan, Jiangxi and Anhui.

The NMC advised people to stay alert for heavy rain as the Chinese have a tradition of making spring outings to enjoy the greenery and visiting family graves on Qingming, also known as the Tomb-Sweeping Day, which will fall on Sunday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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