Friday, October 10, 2008

Earthquake monitoring system to be built in MoGao Grottoes

The Dunhuang Academy China, Gansu Earthquake Bureau and Lanzhou Institute of Seismology, China Earthquake Administration reached a cooperation project recently, that the earthquake monitoring system, specifically for the significant cultural heritages, will be built in the Mogao Grottoes. The system will be built in October, and completed next year.

The monitoring system will incorporate a seismic array and a strong motion observation array in Mogao Grottoes and the surrounding areas. The system will be part of the Gansu Province seismic network to make real-time monitoring.

The monitoring system monitors the situation of seismic activities in the Mogao Grottoes and the surrounding areas, and it also provides early warning for the protection of Mogao Grottoes.

By People's Daily Online

China, Germany hold strategic dialogue in Berlin

China and Germany held the second round of strategic dialogue on Thursday, Chinese diplomats said, noting that the dialogue was "very fruitful."

Thursday's dialogue was jointly hosted by Chinese Foreign Minister Assistant Wu Hongbo and Reinhard Silberberg, State Secretary of German Foreign Ministry.

The two sides exchanged views on the relations between China and Germany, the ties between China and Europe as well as the major international and regional issues of common concern, according to Chinese diplomats.

The two sides agreed that it is in the interest of both countries and both peoples to enhance the friendly cooperative relations between China and Germany, and it is also beneficial to world peace and development by doing so.

Both sides believed that the strategic dialogue was "very fruitful," said the Chinese diplomats, adding that both sides agreed to keep the dialogue process going on.

During the talks, Silberberg said Germany values the relations with China and will continue to adhere to the one-China policy. Germany is also willing to strengthen the bilateral cooperation in various fields.

The strategic dialogue between China and Germany was initiated by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and German Chancellor Angela Merkel in May 2006.

The dialogue is aimed at increasing the communication and mutual political trust between the two countries, so as to boost the bilateral relations in an all-around manner.

In November 2006, the first round of strategic dialogue between China and Germany was held in Beijing.

Source: Xinhua

Three dead in northwest China coal mine accident

Three miners who were trapped in a coal mine flood Sunday have all been found dead, said authorities in northwest China's Shaanxi Province on Friday.

A tunnel of Chang'an Coal Mine, owned by Xundong Coal Industry Company in Xunyi, flooded around 6 p.m. Oct.5 while 16 miners were working underground.

Thirteen escaped unhurt the following day, but three remained trapped, said a local source.

The local government organized a rescue operation shortly after the mine flooded.

The remains of the last miner was found by the rescuers early Friday.

The cause of the flood has not been released.

Source: Xinhua

China steps up anti-graft efforts in past 30 years

China has beefed up the anti-corruption and discipline work since the country adopted the reform and opening-up policy 30 years ago, official sources said.

To ensure major policies of the central government to be faithfully implemented at various levels, the Ministry of Supervision , working with other relevant departments, has severely cracked down on defiant activities.

In October 2006, for example, the MOS and the Ministry of Land and Resources launched a campaign to overhaul cases involving the illegal use of land nationwide. As of June this year when it was concluded, 3,733 officials were punished, of whom 2,393 were prosecuted.

Government officials and heads of state-owned enterprises were punished for abuse of power or dereliction of duty. A campaign cracking down on these people buying shares in coal mines launched since August 2005 has punished 148 involving 709 million yuan .

To further curb corruption, the departments of supervision and land and resources have introduced public bidding mechanism for land use and mining rights since 2004.

China now has 3,224 supervision and discipline departments at various levels with 360,000 staff.

In last September, the National Bureau of Corruption Prevention was set up, which helped further beef up the country's anti-graft efforts.

Source: Xinhua

Seven dead, seven injured in south China mine gas blast

Seven miners died and another seven were injured after a coal mine gas blast on Friday morning in south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, a local safety official said.

The accident occurred at around 9:20 a.m. in a well of Heshan Coal Mine Co. Ltd in Heshan City, said Zeng Biao, the Laibin Municipal Work Safety Bureau deputy head.

Heshan is a city administered by Laibin City.

Less than 100 miners were underground at the time of the blast according to the company, Zeng said.

The bureau is verifying the exact number, he said.

In total, 91 miners were found. Eighteen miners were helping with the rescue work under the well and 66 got out of the well safely, he said.

Rescuers were still working in a shaft yet to be searched.

Heshan Coal Mine Co. Ltd is a joint venture with a Hong Kong investment company. It has the exploitation right and mining rights for 820 million tons of coal mine in three mines in Guangxiand neighbouring Guizhou Province.

It is the largest coal mine company in Guangxi with an annual production capacity of around 8 million tons.

The cause of the accident is under investigation.

Source: Xinhua

Chinese police arrest suspect producing largest amount of "protein powder" in milk scandal

Police in north China's Hebei Province arrested a suspect who produced the largest-ever amount of "protein powder" with the chemical melamine and caught eight other people who bought the powder, local authorities said on Friday.

Zhang Yujun, a resident of Quzhou County, Hebei Province, produced more than 600 tons of the protein powder, made of melamine and maltodextrin, from September 2007 to August 2008 in a village in Licheng District, Jinan City of eastern Shandong Province, a Hebei provincial public security department official said.

Zhang was caught in Handan City, Hebei.

Zhang first learned the method of producing the fake powder at his dairy farm in Hebei. With the pseudonym of Zhang Haitao, he began to produce the powder on a large scale later in Shandong, the official said.

The melamine, which could lead to urinary tract problems such as kidney stones, was first found in powdered baby milk produced by dairy giant Sanlu Group, based in the provincial capital Shijiazhuang.

Maltodextrin, easily digestible and absorbed as rapidly as glucose, is produced from starch and used as a food additive.

The police caught eight other suspects who bought the powder from Zhang in other parts of Hebei. They included food additive vendors, cattle farm owners and fresh milk purchasers.

Police have arrested 36 in total connected to the country's tainted milk scandal in Hebei, according to Xinhua's count.

The suspects were alleged to have produced, sold or added the chemical melamine into fresh milk to deceive protein tests.

Source: Xinhua

E China labor official gets death sentence, reprieve for bribery, fund embezzlement

A labor and social security official was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve at the first trial on Friday for taking bribes and embezzling public funds in east China's Jiangxi Province.

Tao Niangen, former Labor and Social Security Bureau director of Nanchang City, the provincial capital, had taken bribes of 5.67million yuan from five private construction companies since 1995 when he began to serve in the post, according to the Nanchang Intermediate People's Court.

The largest bribe, 5.12 million yuan, came from Tao Chunhua, Nanchang Xinhuaqun Co. Ltd general manager, in exchange for a 20-year right to run the Huanhu Hotel under the bureau's administration, the court said.

Tao's wife Chen Jinfeng, and his son Tao Ran, were convicted of accepting bribes worth 550,000 yuan in 1997-2000 in return for favorable treatment in construction projects or promotion.

The court also heard Tao embezzled as much as 68.9 million yuan in industrial insurance funds from 1993 to 2005 for construction projects. The funds had not been recovered.

Tao appealed to a higher court after the trial. Other defendants in the case had not been tried yet.

Source: Xinhua