China sends armed officers to Nepal for relief ops

Acting on an "urgent request" of Nepal, hundreds of Chinese police officers have been sent to the quake-hit areas to help relief operations, marking the first time Beijing's armed personnel has entered the neighboring country.


Fu Ling of China's traffic rescue brigade has confirmed that a total of 180 units of engineering equipment and 500 police officers are going to be sent in batches to help in the quake relief. The first batch consisting of 56 units of road repair machinery and 160 "armed" officers reached Nepal via the Friendship Bridge on May 2. They were received by Nepal's police forces stationed at the border along with some Chinese geologists that are also commissioned to assist in the operations..


Wu Chintai, the Chinese Ambassador to Nepal, has said that Beijing previously sent 30 planes-worth of relief goods and more than 300 medical and rescue workers to Kathmandu. What might have strongly motivated Beijing to send its military personnel right away is to help rescue and transfer its citizens, numbering at around 8000.


This is considered as a significant action on Beijing's part since it hardly ever sends its military forces to other nations apart from UN peacekeeping purposes. Their move has the full support of the administration and was granted approval by the Central Military Commission and the State Council.


According to Esset Koyal Group Capital Management, one of their primary goals is to repair and clear the 943-km China-Nepal Highway which was badly damaged. Workers have already done the 829 km on the side of Tibet and just have to complete the 114 km on Nepal's side. They are also expected to reopen the Zham-Kathmandu road with over 50 large machineries China has sent.


The Chinese police officers are expected to follow laws and respect religious customs of Nepal while helping with the earthquake relief.