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Fu Ying met with Members of the British Medical Team

On 4 June, Ambassador Fu Ying met with some members and organizers of the British medical team that had just come back from Sichuan. They were: TONY REDMOND,team leader and professor of ICU from Manchester University, WASEEM SAEED, orthopedist from Leeds Hospital, HEATHER MCCLELLAN, nurse from CALDERDALE & HUDDERSFIELD hospital, MARTIN MCCANN, CEO of Register of Engineers for Disaster Relief. DANIEL DRAKE, China desk officer from the FCO, Minister Counselor Zhang Lirong and Counselor Wang Shuying were also present.

Fu Ying extended her sincere thanks to the British medical team who had been to China to help with the disaster rescue and relief. Fu Ying said that it was with lofty humanitarianism and friendship to the Chinese people that the British side was able to organize a medical team of high professionalism within two days and that the members were able to leave their immediate work and fly to China to help rescue the people suffered and injured from the earthquake disaster. On 30 May Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi thanked their work on behalf of the Chinese government and people when meeting them in Chengdu. Chinese media, general public and netizens also gave very good comments to their work.

Fu Ying said that the British government and people have given China their sympathy and support since the Wenchuan earthquake. The embassy received many letters of condolence, donation and materials worth nearly a million pounds. Many stories were moving. From the TV, one can see that the 5000 tents donated by the British government had already reached the disaster areas and were well received there. The volunteers put up a tent within 20 minutes and a mother signed that she and her child were able to sleep a good sleep.

Fu Ying said that the earthquake was a disaster but in the course of rescue and relief work, China and the world increased their mutual understanding. The western people were able to see the moving pictures of the Chinese government, army and people working as one to prevail the disaster. The Chinese people were also moved by the sincere condolence and generous donation from the international community.

Professor REDMOND expressed on behalf of all the members of the medical team that they admired the Chinese government's rapid response and well-organized rescue and relief efforts. They were encouraged by the strong will and unity of the Chinese people in face with disaster. The team was well treated and supported by relevant departments of the Chinese government and the local medical workers. They also owed their effective work to China's Foreign Ministry, local government and the Chinese embassy.

Professor REDMOND added that many of the injured suffered from backbone injury and had amputation. Follow-up treatment required huge input. The team was willing to work with hospitals in Sichuan to provide more help to the injured for their recovery. Fu Ying said that the embassy would work in between.

Thanks to close coordination between the Chinese and British governments, the 7-member medical team organized by Register of Engineers for Disaster Relief went to Sichuan on 23 May. They stayed in hospitals in Mianyang and Chengdu and despite aftershocks and completed many operations in cooperation with local hospitals. They helped save life and gave training. Virgin sponsored all their travel costs. DIFD, FCO and the British embassy in Beijing provided assistance.

Members of the team also included Amjid Mohammed, Lucy Reynolds, Asad Syed and Toby Branfoot. They will be remembered by people in Sichuan disaster areas.