A team of Chinese diplomats arrived in Baghdad Monday afternoon
and will soon start preparations for the reopening of the Chinese
Embassy in the Iraqi capital.
The Chinese team, comprising seven officials from the Foreign
Ministry and the Commerce Ministry and six security guards, will
stay in a hotel for the time being while looking for a temporary
facility to work in, Sun Bigan, chief of the Chinese team charged
with the task of reopening the Chinese Embassy, told Xinhua.
Looting sprees in Baghdad that followed the US-led war on Iraq
caused serious damage to the buildings and facilities inside the
The Chinese diplomats will contact officials of the Iraqi
Governing Council, the Coalition Provisional Authority and UN
offices in Iraq and will also try to help Chinese companies
participate in Iraq's post-war reconstruction, Sun said.
Sun, a former ambassador to Iraq, said team members are all
braced for the difficulties in living and working conditions and
have pledged to spare no effort to fulfill their mission.
This is the first time Chinese diplomats have formally returned
to Iraq since the US-led coalition launched the war against Iraq in
March 2003. The last Chinese diplomats left Baghdad just three days
before the war broke out and the Chinese embassy staff had been
staying in Amman, capital of Jordan.
(Xinhua News Agency February 17, 2004)