Belarus Reaffirms Commitment to China, President Lukashenko Says

June 26, 2024

Belarus Reaffirms Commitment to China, President Lukashenko Says

According to TASS on June 25, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has stated that Minsk has always been willing to cooperate with Beijing. During a meeting with representatives from Chinese universities, Lukashenko reminded attendees that some countries had previously attempted to pull Belarus away from China.

“Some countries promised a lot, trying to pull Belarus away from China. We did not betray China. That was five or six years ago. We will always cooperate with China. If China needs it, use Belarus to advance its interests in Europe,” Lukashenko said.

The Belarusian President also mentioned that he had visited China as a parliamentarian and spoke about China’s great prospects, although few believed him then.

Lukashenko’s comments came during a meeting with leaders from 15 Chinese and 9 Belarusian higher education institutions. A delegation of Chinese university presidents arrived in Minsk to attend a forum for heads of Belarusian and Chinese higher education institutions.


China Calls for Immediate Ceasefire in Gaza, Criticizes Israel’s Actions

In a forceful address to the UN Security Council on June 25, China’s UN Ambassador Fu Cong called for an immediate halt to the violence in Gaza, criticizing Israel’s continued military actions despite previous ceasefire initiatives.

Fu expressed frustration with the lack of progress since the U.S. announced Israel’s acceptance of a ceasefire plan on May 31. “Regrettably, the international community has yet to see any concrete signs from Israel agreeing to a lasting ceasefire,” Fu stated. He pointed out that Israel has instead intensified its military operations, repeatedly striking refugee camps in Rafah, Nuseirat, and Gaza City, resulting in mounting civilian casualties and putting humanitarian organizations at risk.

China emphasized the critical need for an immediate and sustainable ceasefire, urging Israel to “heed the overwhelming calls from the international community” to cease its military operations and end “collective punishment” of Gaza’s residents.

Fu also expressed serious concern about reports of Israel preparing for military operations against Lebanon, echoing UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ statement that the Middle East situation is precarious and cannot withstand Lebanon becoming another Gaza.

China called on the international community to take all necessary actions to promote an immediate and lasting ceasefire in Gaza, restart the two-state solution, and work towards long-term peace and stability in the Middle East region.


Tragic Fire at South Korean Battery Factory Claims 17 Chinese Lives

The Chinese Embassy in South Korea has released new information regarding the tragic fire at a battery factory in Hwaseong City, Gyeonggi Province. According to the latest update on June 25, of the 23 bodies recovered, Korean authorities preliminarily identified 17 as Chinese citizens based on personal belongings. However, the exact number still needs further confirmation. Additionally, eight people were injured, including one Chinese citizen with minor injuries.

The fire broke out at the factory, which produces lithium batteries for military and civilian use, around 8:30 pm, June 24 local time. It took firefighters nearly five hours to extinguish the blaze.

According to a survivor of the fire, who identified herself as Kim Ze-won (pseudonym), there were over 100 workers employed at the factory, most of whom were ethnic Korean women from northeastern China in their 30s and 40s. Most of the victims were from the factory’s second floor of Building 3, which housed the battery packaging and welding workshops.

Kim Ze-won stated that the factory paid the minimum wage of 9,860 won (approximately $8) per hour, which was lower than other jobs but offered less strenuous work, retirement benefits, and engineering subsidies. She also mentioned that most factory workers in South Korea are ethnic Koreans from China, like her, who come to the country through labor contracts arranged by brokers.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

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