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Chinese peacekeepers in Sudan awarded medals
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Chinese peacekeepers in Sudan received United Nations Peace-keeping Medals on Thursday in honor of their great contributions to peace and the reconstruction of the country.

To celebrate China's Spring Festival, the traditional Chinese New Year, UN officials made special arrangements to advance the medal-awarding day two months ahead of the return of the third contingent of Chinese peacekeeping troops to their homeland.

Ashraf Qazi, the UN chief's special representative in Sudan, and Lt. Gen. Jasbir Singh Lidder, commander of the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS), awarded peace medals to the Chinese peacekeepers at a ceremony in the southwestern city of Wau.

Qazi said the Chinese peacekeepers are the most popular among the local people, praising Zhang Yong, political commissar with the Chinese contingent, and 19 other officers and soldiers as true men of peace.

In addition to the peace medals, the UN officials conferred honors to Chinese engineering, medical and transport units for their special contributions.

As part of the UNMIS, China joined the peacekeeping operation in the Wau region in May 2006. The third contingent arrived in September 2007.

(Xinhua News Agency February 8, 2008)

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