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Photo Archive --- Date:20031223

US soldiers killed in Baghdad

A US soldier patrols the street in Iraq's capital city of Baghdad Dec. 22, 2003. Two US soldiers were killed and two others wounded when a roadside bomb exploded near their convoy in Baghdad on Monday, the US military said. (Xinhua)

First Sino-Russian Lantern Fair in Harbin

An illuminated 100-meter-dragon made of 120,000 porcelain wares is exhibited at the First Sino-Russian Lantern Fair in Harbin, capital of northeast China's Heilongjiang Province, Dec, 22, 2003. More than 100 lanterns of different styles are on display at the fair which opened on Monday. (Xinhua)

Smuggled cultural relics returned home

Photo taken on Dec. 22, 2003 shows a precious two-ear pottery jar with veins among some of the retrieved rare cultural relics of Neolithic Age from contraband by the Tianjin Customs. On the day, the Tianjin Customs handed over to Tianjin Municipal Bureau of Cultural Relics 8,691 pieces of cultural relics seized between 1995 and 2001, including farmost ancient locust fossils and porcelain wares as well as Buddha statues dated back to the Qing Dyansty (1644-1911), the largest number for such a practice in recent years. (Xinhua) 

China to end practice of motorcycle escorts for visiting foreign leaders

The undated file photo shows a motorcycle escorting team on its training session in V shape in Beijing. The Chinese government will end the practice of motorcycle escorts for foreign leaders visiting Beijing from Jan. 1, 2004. This is because the three lanes of Beijing's Chang'an Avenue had to be cleared, and the intersections of other roads and streets closed if motorcycle escorts were arranged. China has nearly 40 state guests every year, and the arrangement of motorcycle escorts brings inconveniences to the lives of ordinary people. The motorcycle escort practice was not a security necessity, but a protocol arrangement, which most countries had already ended. (Xinhua)

Rescue work for Hengyang Fire

An investigation team member inspects the site of a big fire in the city of Hengyang, central China's Hunan Province, Dec. 22, 2003. The investigation team said Sunday that they had found the cause of a building collapse that killed 20 firemen in the city, 48 days after the tragedy. Five pillars in the building's northwest succumbed to a blaze fueled by a large quantity of polythene plastics, which then brought down the 3,000-square meter building, according to the investigation team. (Xinhua)

Job training for laid-off workers

Mou Shujie (front), former laid-off worker from a state enterprise, assembles water pumps for cotton-padded mattress after re-employed in the enterprise in Harbin, capital of northeast China's Heilongjiang Province, Dec. 19, 2003. Some of the laid-off workers were re-employed by the same enterprise after receiving some kind of job training. (Xinhua)

Farmers Benefit from growing sugar cane

A boy chews newly harvested sugar cane in Wubei Village in Hengxian County, southwest China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Dec. 22, 2003. Farmers of the village gained more money from growing sugar cane by using organic-inorganic mixed fertilizer and reducing the production costs. (Xinhua)

Strong quake hits California

Emergency service teams work at the site of a collapsed building Monday, Dec. 22, 2003, in Pasa Robles, Calif. At least three people died today when a magnitude-6.5 earthquake struck Central California. (AP Photo)

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