Chinese military offers assistance to Japan

Last Updated: Tuesday, March 15, 2011 - 22:35

Beijing: Setting aside sticky maritime
dispute, Chinese military on Tuesday offered to send quake-relief
materials and rescue teams to Japan where thousands have been
killed in earthquake and tsunami.

There has been public outpouring of sympathy for the
Japanese people in the Communist nation.

Apart from relief materials, the armed forces could
also send medical, rescue, or disease prevention teams or a
hospital ship to the quake zone as soon as possible to "help
the Japanese overcome the difficulties," Chinese Defence
Ministry said in a statement.

Chinese Defence Minister Liang Guanglie has already
conveyed his condolences to his Japanese counterpart after
parts of Japan was hit by massive earthquake followed by
deadly Tsunami and offered help.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao too conveyed his
condolences to his Japanese counterpart stating that China
stands ready to give Japan more help, besides sending rescue
teams.

China and Japan went through tense period last year
over the control of disputed of the Diaoyu/Sankaku islands in
South China Sea after Japan detained the skipper of a fishing
trawler.

He was let off after a prolonged standoff between
the two countries denting the bilateral ties.

"I want to extend our deep condolences for the loss of
life in this disaster and to express our sincere sympathy to
the Japanese people," Wen said at the end of his annual press
conference yesterday.

"China is also a country that is prone to earthquakes
and we fully empathise with how the Japanese people feel now,"
he said recalling help extended by Japan when China was hit by
a massive Wenchuan earthquake in May 2008.

"We have provided relief supplies to Japan.

We will continue to provide further necessary aid to
Japan in accordance with their needs," he said.

Besides dispatching a 15-member rescue team arrived in
Japan on Monday China has donated 30 million yuan (USD 4.56
million) in relief supplies to Japan.

China`s Red Cross Society has donated a total of 6
million yuan (around USD 909,000) in emergency aid to its
Japanese counterpart.

The offer of more help by Chinese military was
announced today amid spontaneous campaign by public in China
to mobilise help and assistance for Tsunami victims in Japan.

Chinese billionaire and philanthropist Chen Guangbiao
is currently in Japan to participate in the rescue operation.

He said he would donate cash and emergency medicine.
"The efforts of the Japanese rescuers during the
Wenchuan quake moved me a lot.

Now that they are in trouble, we must help them, too,"
he said Chinese official media also carried reports of
spontaneous efforts by Chinese public to mobilise relief funds
for Japanese victims.

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, March 15, 2011 - 22:35

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