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Home >> China
UPDATED: 08:44, July 28, 2006
Team flies to Israel to handle aftermath
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A six-member team left for Israel yesterday to handle the aftermath of the death of Chinese UN observer Du Zhaoyu, who was killed in an Israeli air raid on a UN post in south Lebanon a day earlier.

The team, consisting of personnel from the Foreign Ministry and the Peacekeeping Affairs Office of the Ministry of National Defence, will escort Du's remains back home in a few days.

Du's wife Li Lingling, who is also with the PLA, accompanied the team.

According to sources with the Chinese Embassy in Lebanon, Du's body has been sent to the UN headquarters in Israel and the Chinese diplomatic mission there is liaising with Israeli authorities.

Du, 34, was a lieutenant-colonel in the People's Liberation Army (PLA); and was sent to Lebanon last December as a UN observer.

An Israeli bomb destroyed the UN observer post on Lebanon's southern border on Tuesday, killing four UN observers. The other three were from Austria, Canada and Finland.

Defence Minister Cao Gangchuan called for efforts to prevent similar accidents from happening again.

Cao and Liang Guanglie, chief of the PLA general staff, expressed deep condolences over Du's death and utmost sympathy for his family.

Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing on Wednesday described Du and his three UN colleagues as "outstanding sons of their countries."

Li said their blood should not be shed in vain, nor should people in the Middle East shed more blood.

In Du's hometown of Jinan, capital of East China's Shandong Province, his former teachers and schoolmates grieved his death.

Yin Ning, Du's high school classmate, described him as a sincere friend who was always helpful to others.

All his schoolmates burst into tears when they learned about his death, Yin said.

"Du is the pride of not only his parents, but also the entire neighbourhood," said Wang Xiaoyun, a colleague of Du's father.

Source: China Daily

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