Safeguarding "Heaven on Earth", Chinese Diplomats in Action
Sidelight of the Chinese Embassy in Mauritius Participating in the Volunteering Activities
2020/08/19
 

At the end of July 2020, MV Wakashio ran aground in the southeastern waters of Mauritius, followed by an oil spill, and Mauritius entered the state of "environmental emergency". Cleaning up oil pollution as soon as possible has become a top priority.

Following the initiative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade of Mauritius to call on the foreign diplomatic missions based in Mauritius to clean up the beaches, the Chinese Embassy in Mauritius responded quickly with the Chinese diplomats actively signing up under the leadership of Ambassador Sun Gongyi .

August 15 witnessed Chinese diplomats appearing in the mangrove forests along the eastern coast of Mauritius. Wearing protective clothes and rubber gloves, they took an active part in the cleanup activities.  

"The oil has spilled into the weeds and rocks. It's not easy to shovel it. It might be faster to clean it up with our hands." While talking, several diplomats knelt down and took up the sticky oil with both hands and put it into the recycling bag. They cooperated tacitly, propping up the cloth bag, shoveling the oil, and transporting the oil bucket...   

Despite the protection of the masks and gloves, the pungent smell of heavy oil was still pervasive. The sweat soaked the protective clothes of the Chinese diplomats with big beads rolling off their faces. But instead of complaining, they said jokingly, "Don't let sweat flow into your eyes, otherwise there will be no extra hand to wipe it." At this moment, cleaning up as much oil as possible can give mangroves and rare wild animals and plants more chances to survive.

"The Chinese diplomats who are able to come are all here today. The serious pollution caused by the oil spill on the island is distressing. We hope to do something within our capacity for the restoration and protection of the environment in Mauritius!" Ambassador Sun Gongyi said when giving an interview to CCTV Africa, "Chinese-funded enterprises in Mauritius have also donated urgently needed materials such as geotextiles, oil buckets, and safety nets, and gathered more than 200 employees to participate in the voluntary cleanup work." Mauritian Foreign Minister Bodha told reporters, "When Mauritius encounters difficulties, Chinese friends are always with us. Today's voluntary cleanup activities have received active responses from friends of various countries, including Chinese diplomats. We would like to thank China and other friendly countries for their timely help which has given us more confidence in handling  the oil spill."

At noon, in the interval when the Chinese diplomats removed their protective clothing stained with oil and walked out of the mangroves, the villagers on the roadside smiled and gave thumbs up to Ambassador Sun Gongyi passing by, "Good job,Your Excellency! Thank China and the Chinese Embassy!"

The weather is getting warmer, winter is about to be over, and spring is not far away... Mauritius known as "Heaven on Earth" will surely tide over the difficulties and restore its former purity and beauty.

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