Sat, March 10, 2012
China > China & World

Wounded Chinese workers in Congo blasts to head home

2012-03-09 21:04:45 GMT2012-03-10 05:04:45(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

An injured Chinese worker is being carried to an ambulance heading to the airport in Brazzaville, capital of Republic of Congo, March 9, 2012. A chartered plane arranged by Beijing took off here on Friday night, taking home 31 wounded Chinese workers from last week's arsenal blasts in Brazzaville. (Xinhua/Han Bing)

An injured Chinese worker waits to be carried to an ambulance heading to the airport in Brazzaville, capital of Republic of Congo, March 9, 2012. A chartered plane arranged by Beijing took off here on Friday night, taking home 31 wounded Chinese workers from last week's arsenal blasts in Brazzaville. (Xinhua/Wang Minjie)

An injured Chinese worker is being carried to an ambulance heading to the airport in Brazzaville, capital of Republic of Congo, March 9, 2012. A chartered plane arranged by Beijing took off here on Friday night, taking home 31 wounded Chinese workers from last week's arsenal blasts in Brazzaville. (Xinhua/Wang Minjie)

An injured Chinese worker is being carried to an ambulance heading to the airport in Brazzaville, capital of Republic of Congo, March 9, 2012. A chartered plane arranged by Beijing took off here on Friday night, taking home 31 wounded Chinese workers from last week's arsenal blasts in Brazzaville. (Xinhua/Wang Minjie)

Injured Chinese workers rest on a plane heading to Beijing, at the airport in Brazzaville, capital of Republic of Congo, March 9, 2012. A chartered plane arranged by Beijing took off here on Friday night, taking home 31 wounded Chinese workers from last week's arsenal blasts in Brazzaville. (Xinhua/Han Bing)

BRAZZAVILLE, March 9 (Xinhua) -- A chartered plane arranged by Beijing took off on Friday night in Brazzaville, capital of Republic of Congo, to take home 31 wounded Chinese workers from last week's arsenal blasts in the city.

The plane set off at 8:00 p.m. local time from the Maya Maya Airport. It is expected to land in Beijing on Saturday night after a 16-hour flight. "We have already assessed the workers' wounds to ensure that they can undergo the long-distance flight," said Yang Guoqiang, a senior official with the Beijing Municipal government, who is also in charge of the operation. "They will be receiving medical treatment in hospitals in Beijing."

Also aboard the plane are five Chinese medical experts who were dispatched to Brazzaville by Beijing shortly after the blasts to tend to the wounded.

The blasts, which the local government said was caused by an electrical short circuit in an arms depot in Brazzaville, claimed more than 200 lives and wounded over 1,500. Six Chinese workers out of about 140 who were working at a nearby construction site were killed in the blasts.

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