China's Libya evacuation highlights People-First nature of government

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After nine days of emergency evacuations and with no thought for the expense, China had plucked more than 35,000 citizens from the chaos in Libya by Wednesday.

The effort has proven to be a decisive success in China's largest-scale overseas evacuation since the birth of new China in 1949.

The massive, orderly and extraordinarily efficient evacuation is widely regarded as a vivid reflection of the Chinese government's motto of "putting people first and running the government in the interest of the people."

Thanks to the swift action of the Chinese government and timely orders issued by President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao, the evacuation has been conducted in such a way that all-out efforts were mobilized to complete the mission.

That effort became especially important after thousands of Chinese nationals in the troubled North African country were robbed and a dozen were wounded as they tried to flee the violence.

The swift evacuation also benefited from China's growing national power and equally important, the advantage of the socialist system enabling the whole country to mobilize all of the necessary resources needed for an arduous mission.

The evacuation of more than 35,000 people from Libya is undoubtedly a huge and complex mission. From government organs to the Navy and Air Force, to overseas embassies and civil aviation authorities, the Chinese government mobilized all that was needed to withdraw its citizens from the volatile country by air, sea and land.

The evacuation shows that the Chinese government has paid more and more attention to the safety and interests of the grassroots Chinese.

Since the evacuation from the riots in East Timor in 2006, the Chinese government has rolled out dozens of overseas evacuation operations, extending timely rescues to tens of thousands Chinese nationals trapped in danger.

The current operation pursues the same course, but its scale, difficulty and efficiency are so outstanding that it can serve as a new milestone in China's overseas rescue history.

The success cannot be achieved without hard efforts made by the government at various levels, without solidarity or the strong will of the evacuees, or without the self-giving help offered by numerous Chinese compatriots.

The success in evacuation, which displays the traditional Chinese merits of solidarity, unwavering will and self-courage, also strengthened the rallying force of the whole country and the national pride of overseas Chinese.

"Welcome home!" When hearing the greeting from You Quan, deputy secretary-general of the State Council, upon their arrival at the airport in Beijing, many evacuees burst into tears.

At this very minute, all the overseas Chinese would keep in mind: though thousands of miles apart, China -- a prosperous, stable and strong homeland -- is always their safe haven linking them by hearts.

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