Chinese peacekeeper’s body brought home from Mali
CHANGCHUN—The body of Chinese UN peacekeeping soldier Shen Liangliang, who was killed in a terrorist attack in Mali last month, arrived in northeast China’s Changchun City on Thursday afternoon.
Around 3 p.m. Beijing time, a Chinese air force plane carrying Shen’s body arrived at Longjia Airport in Changchun, Jilin Province, where Shen served in the army for 11 years.
The plane took off on Wednesday local time from Bamako, capital of Mali. It was sent by China’s Central Military Commission (CMC) to bring Shen’s body home.
The 29-year-old sergeant first class was killed in a terrorist attack on the night of May 31 in the northern Malian town of Gao, when a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device detonated at a United Nations camp.
Another five Chinese peacekeepers were injured. Shen’s coffin, covered with a Chinese flag, was carried out of the plane by eight honor guards. Another honor guard who held Shen’s portrait walked in front of the coffin.
With music played by a military band, the eight honor guards slowly put Shen’s coffin on top of a white platform, and two female soldiers laid a white wreath on it.
About 500 officers, civilian officials and soldiers at the airport took off their hats, making three bows to salute the sacrificed soldier. “Shen’s sacrifice showed the heroic spirit and bravery of Chinese soldiers,” Yi Xiaoguang, deputy chief of the Joint Staff Department of CMC, said at a simple ceremony at the airport. “Peace-loving people around the world will never forget, the motherland and Chinese people will never forget, the whole army will never forget,” Yi said, calling on all servicemen to contribute to safeguarding national sovereignty and peace worldwide.
A soldier handed over Shen’s portrait to Shen Mingming, Shen’s elder brother, and the eight honor guards again lifted the coffin, following Shen Mingming and putting the coffin into a hearse.—Xinhua Vermont senator had made Mrs Clinton a “better candidate”.
The two men are due to meet at the White House later on Thursday. Afterwards, President Obama is tipped to formally endorse Mrs Clinton and call for the party to unite against the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. Speaking on NBC’s Tonight Show, Mr Obama admitted the race had been “ouchy”. But he went on to say this was welcome: “It was a healthy thing for the Democratic Party to have a contested primary.—Agencies