By Li Qingqing Source:Global Times
A representative of overseas Chinese students poses for a photo with health kit at the Chinese Embassy in Germany, in Berlin, Germany, April 2, 2020. The Chinese Embassy in Germany distributed health kits consisting of face masks, disinfection supplies and epidemic prevention manuals to the representatives of overseas Chinese students here on Thursday. (Xinhua/Shan Yuqi)
As the COVID-19 pandemic is raging across the world, many Chinese students who are stranded abroad are worried about the epidemic situation overseas and are anxious to return to China.
China is also arranging temporary flights to other countries to fly these students back home, however, some Western media have hyped that Chinese students are facing an “uneasy reception” back home. This is completely groundless.
China cares for its own people. At this critical juncture, China will never turn a blind eye to the safety of Chinese students overseas. For example, from March 4 to April 3, China sent 11 special flights to bring back 1,827 Chinese citizens, mostly students, from Iran, Italy and the UK.
The Chinese Embassy in the US on Monday released an online survey to check how many Chinese students in the US are seeking to return to China as the embassy is planning to send chartered flights to bring them back.
Chinese embassies overseas have also deployed 500,000 “health packs” to Chinese students including over 11 million face masks and 500,000 disinfectant products. These facts show that China has taken many measures to ensure the health of these students.
Indeed, there are some Chinese students who have failed to abide by quarantine regulations and requirements after returning to China. They should be criticized. Whether it’s Chinese students overseas, or Chinese people who travelled abroad, or foreigners, they are treated equally in China in terms of quarantine.
This has nothing to do with their identity as Chinese students studying abroad, and thus saying that they are unwelcome in China sounds even more absurd. Some Western media were trying to hype up disputes.
The number of new local infections of COVID-19 is basically under control now, and there are indeed some Chinese people worried that the increasing imported cases will destroy China’s hard-won achievement in epidemic control. But this is totally different from refusing to allow Chinese people back to their home country. We can take strict quarantine measures to maintain the current situation of epidemic control.
Besides, it is worth noting that most Chinese people are in favor of gradually bringing back Chinese students from overseas in a safe and orderly manner. This is also an example of the style of a responsible major power. Chinese people have been and will always be united in the face of a crisis.
Given rising racism in Western countries toward Chinese, some in the US even said that they are afraid of walking on the streets, let alone wearing face masks outside. Thus, at this critical moment, Chinese students especially need the protection of their motherland.
China has offered them welcome and warmth. For example, Dong Kaisheng, chief nurse at Beijing’s Xiaotangshan Hospital, has demanded the nursing staff say “Welcome home” when greeting returnees. “We hope they feel at home when they come here,” Dong said.
Many Chinese students have also said they feel safer and more at ease after they returned to China.
These students are children of their motherland. They are also an important force for building China’s future. It is China’s responsibility to help them come back home in the current difficult times.
Amid the raging pandemic, they are victims of racism and hatred in Western countries, but their homeland will always be their powerful backing. Attempts by some Western media to incite hatred among Chinese people will never succeed.
The author is a reporter with the Global Times. [email protected]