9 May 2015: The sheer number of military and police personnel involved in China’s relief operations in Nepal following the April 25 earthquake was reportedly the biggest the communist nation had ever sent to a foreign country.
Xinhua, China’s official news agency, said yesterday that China sent 1088 personnel as of May 7.
The number is apparently a record in the history of the country since the New China was formed in 1949, the agency said quoting the General Staff Headquarters of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA).
“The PLA Air Force deployed eight transport planes, three helicopters and 190 pieces of engineering machinery to Nepal to facilitate quake relief efforts,” Xinhua said.
According to a statement of China’s Ministry of Commerce, the country has mobilized a total of 546 tonnes of relief materials worth 60 million yuan, approximately USD 9.8 million.
The Chinese government also sent 1,600 tents, 10,000 blankets and 327 electric generators while the Red Cross Society of China provided 2,000 tents to the quake-hit nation.
China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has assured the Government of Nepal of every assistance the latter needs to deal with the effects of the 7.9 magnitude earthquake. A Chinese medical team has been working with the Nepalese health officials to formulate a post-disaster health and epidemic prevention plan, Xinhua said.
“In the wake of the powerful quake on April 25, a 62-member Chinese search and rescue team, along with six dogs, arrived in Nepal’s capital Kathmandu the following day to become one of the first international search and rescue teams in the Himalayan country,” the report states and indicated that the Chinese medical professionals treated 2,387 victims of the earthquake.
In recognition of Nepal’s proximity to India, China is said to be coordinating with the Government of India in regard to its relief operations. The Chinese Foreign Ministry has pledged it will continue to communicate with its Indian counterpart as it seeks to help Nepal.
This article was updated, 9 May 2015 1.15 PM AEST