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China thanks Sudanese govt' for rescuing Chinese

(People's Daily Online)

08:41, January 18, 2013

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hong Lei held a press conference on January 17, 2013.(Photo/ Foreign Ministry of China)

BEIJING, Jan. 17 (People's Daily Online) -- A spokesman with China's Foreign Ministry on Thursday expressed gratitude to the Sudanese government for rescuing four abducted Chinese nationals in Sudan's Darfur region.

According to spokesman Hong Lei, the four men are well and stable, except one has a minor injury to his leg.

China hopes both sides can "strengthen cooperation in protecting the safety of Chinese ventures and their staff in Sudan," Hong told a daily press briefing.

The four, who were abducted on Jan. 12 in the Darfur region, were released, according to a local official in North Darfur state on Wednesday. This was confirmed by the Chinese embassy in Khartoum later.

The rescued have been handed to the United Nations-African Union Mission in Darfur, an official with the Chinese embassy told Xinhua.

"Despite the release of the four Chinese workers, the Chinese embassy in Khartoum has asked Chinese companies and all its nationals in Sudan to ... exercise maximum sense of caution and not to go to dangerous and disturbed areas," the Chinese official said.

Earlier Wednesday, Mohamed Suleiman Rabih, Commissioner of Kuma Locality in North Darfur State, said that its authorities had arrested people belonging to a rebel faction, which was responsible for the kidnapping.

The commissioner said efforts were continuing to ensure the release of five Sudanese who also worked for the Chinese company, the Chinese Railway 18 Bureau Group Co., Ltd., which was entrusted with building the western salvation highway, El Fasher-Kuma sector.

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