News from Africa

President Xi Jinping Visits the Cemetery for Memorable Deceased Chinese Experts Assisting Tanzania


Té / 28 March 2013

On March 25, 2013, President Xi Jinping, who was paying a state visit to Tanzania, made a special trip to the Cemetery for Memorable Deceased Chinese Experts Assisting Tanzania to pay tribute to the Chinese martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the great cause of China-Tanzania and China-Africa friendship.

BEIJING, China, March 28, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)

Around 4:00 PM, President Xi Jinping, accompanied by Tanzanian President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, arrived at the cemetery.

The Cemetery for Memorable Deceased Chinese Experts Assisting Tanzania was in a solemn silence as the gentle drizzle softened the fine grass. 69 Chinese experts, technicians, and workers coming to assist Tanzania in its construction were buried here. The wreaths of yellow and white flowers were placed in front of the monument. The two heads of state stepped slowly forward and up to the stairs. Xi Jinping carefully tidied up the ribbons on the wreaths, which read: “Immortal Chinese Experts Assisting Tanzania”. The protocol soldiers blew trumpet in a grave tone and the two heads of state and other staff at the scene bowed and paid a silent tribute to the memorable deceased.

Xi and Kikwete then went into the cemetery. The granite gravestones were neatly lined up on the lawn. The name, place of origin, job title, year of birth and year of death of the martyr were engraved on each gravestone. Xi looked at the gravestones solemnly and listened to the introduction made by the head in charge of cemetery management along the way. He presented the white bouquets to the tombs of the martyrs to pay respect to the deceased.

Walking out of the cemetery, the two heads of state came to the Mourning Pavilion and Xi wrote an inscription on the commemorative book, which reads: "The Spirit of the Martyrs Will Encourage the Future Generations and China-Tanzania Friendship Will Be Handed Down from Generation to Generation."

Xi said with deep emotion that more than 40 years before over 50,000 Chinese brothers and sisters came to Africa with their devotion to the African people. They fought side by side with the brothers and sisters of the people of Tanzania and Zambia, overcoming various difficulties and having completed the construction of Tanzania-Zambia Railway (TAZARA) known as the railway of friendship and the railway of freedom with their sweat, their blood and even their lives. They were more than 60 of them sacrificing their precious lives on this piece of land far away from home. They translated the great spirit of internationalism with their lives. They are the heroes who cast the monument of China-Tanzania and China-Africa friendship. Their names, just like TAZARA, will always be remembered in the hearts of the Chinese, Tanzanian and Zambian people.

Xi noted that China and Africa are working together side by side today to create a better future for the new type of China-Africa strategic partnership. The two sides should carry forward the TAZARA spirit, cherish and take good care of the precious wealth of China-Africa traditional friendship, carry forward the tradition and forge ahead into the future and make the towering tree of China-Africa friendly cooperation flourish and bear more fruits.

President Kikwete also said emotionally that the Chinese martyrs are the heroes in the hearts of the people of Tanzania and Zambia and their spirit will inspire the people of Tanzania and Zambia to continue to move forward along the avenue of China-Africa friendly cooperation.

May you rest in peace, our beloved martyrs making sacrifices to the cause of China-Tanzania and China-Africa friendship. You will never be forgotten by the people of the motherland.

Peng Liyuan, Wang Huning, Li Zhanshu, Yang Jiechi were also present at the above activities.

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