Opinion / Wang Hui

Safety of Chinese nationals overseas in the spotlight

By Wang Hui (China Daily) Updated: 2015-11-25 07:35

Safety of Chinese nationals overseas in the spotlight

Mali security forces assist a hostage, centre, to leave the scene to safety after gunmen attacked the hotel in Bamako, Mali, Friday, Nov 20, 2015. Three Chinese were killed in a hostage-taking situation at the hotel and 4 four other Chinese hostages were rescued. [Photo/IC]

Four Chinese nationals were among the victims in two separate terrorist incidents overseas last week. Their deaths highlight the increasing threat terrorism poses to the personnel safety of Chinese citizens traveling abroad.

On Friday, three Chinese nationals were among the 27 people killed in the terrorist assault on the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako, the Malian capital. The three Chinese victims were all senior executives of China Railway Construction Corporation, and they were in Bamako to discuss a project with Mali's transport ministry.

A day earlier, the Islamic State extremist group declared it had killed both a Chinese and a Norwegian hostage, and China's foreign ministry confirmed the death of Fan Jinghui, a Chinese citizen who went missing in the Middle East region earlier this year.

Chinese leaders have responded to the deaths by vowing to bring the perpetrators to justice and calling for more international efforts and cooperation in the global anti-terror campaign.

As a country which deems terrorism and extremism a common enemy of mankind, China is poised to play a more active role in combating these evil forces both at home and abroad. This will not only help protect its own citizens, but also shore up international efforts to combat global terrorism.

There are many other ways that China can contribute to the international efforts against terror without engaging in direct participation in military operations against the IS group in the Middle East, such as intelligence sharing, helping to cut off the financing channels of terrorist groups and eradicating the soil that breeds terrorism.

With both an increasing number of Chinese people traveling abroad and growing Chinese interests overseas, the country should heighten its capability to deal with emergencies when its personnel or properties are under threat overseas.

Last year, the number of outbound trips by Chinese citizens was more than 100 million and more than 20,000 Chinese enterprises have set up overseas representative offices. There are also millions of Chinese nationals living and working abroad.

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