The first batch of humanitarian aid from the Chinese government for
Iraqi civilians will be shipped to Jordan on Sunday, China's
Ministry of Commerce announced on Friday.
The aid will include 500 tents, each four meters long, 3 meters
wide and 2.5 meters high. The first batch of 100 tents will be
transported by air to Jordan from Urumqi, capital of northwest
Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
The tents are expected to arrive in Amman on Monday. The ministry
said a welfare organization in Jordan will receive the aid and be
responsible for its distribution.
The remaining 400 tents will be sent to Jordan in batches in early
April, the ministry said.
ministry spokesman said China would, as the situation develops,
continue to provide humanitarian aid within its capacity.
And a senior China
Red Cross Society (CRCS) official said on Friday that Chinese
school children are giving their pocket money and the elderly are
contributing their pensions in a national desire to help the
war-ravaged Iraqi people.
The CRCS was collecting donations for Iraqi war victims in line
with international humanitarian principles, said Yang Huixin,
deputy director of the CRCS' external liaison department.
People from all walks of life expressed their hope that Red Cross
organizations would take more concrete measures to help vulnerable
people in the Iraq war.
Yang said the CRCS had demonstrated clearly that humanitarianism
lay in real action. Society staff had been receiving phone calls
from ordinary Chinese, who wanted to give donations and work as
volunteers for Iraqi war victims.
The CRCS issued a statement at the outbreak of war on March 21,
saying it was deeply shocked by the war, and showed deep concern
for the safety of lives and property.
The CRCS also called on all parties concerned to stop the war
immediately, and peacefully solve international disputes via
political means. It urged all parties to strictly abide by the
Geneva Convention and other international treaties and to minimize
harm and misery. The CRCS and other members of the International
Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement (IRCRCM) would offer all the
help in its power.
The CRCS, which was founded in 1904 and is one of the 178 members
of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent
Societies (IFRCRCS), should shoulder the responsibility to help
victims and refugees worldwide, Yang said.
recent years, the society has helped many countries and regions,
such as Afghanistan, Yugoslavia and its Kosovo area, which suffered
from war or natural disasters, with its largest donation totaling
10 million yuan (US$1.2 million).
The CRCS would observe the fundamental principles of the IRCRCM
when giving humanitarian aid to Iraq, and take further action in
accordance with international circumstances, Yang said.
Yang said the Red Cross Movement should assist war victims without
discrimination, prevent and relieve the misery of people on both
the national and international stage.
The Iraqi war evoked a severe humanitarian crisis, Yang said. The
ICRC sent representatives and medical staff to Iraq, calling for a
donation of US$80 million from the international community. The
IFRCRCS also called for a sum of US$80 million.
another development, Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing and
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Anatoly Maximovich Zlenko talked over
the phone on Friday afternoon in a scheduled conversation.
The two sides exchanged views on bilateral relations as well as the
on-going war in Iraq and other issues.
(China Daily March 29, 2003)