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Ambassador Lyu Jian and Chinese Government's Joint Working Group Offered Condolences to Bereaved Families

On the afternoon of July 9, Ambassador Lyu Jian, Mr. Chen Xiongfeng, head of the Chinese government's joint working group and Deputy Director-General of the Department of Consular Affairs of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, and staff of the Chinese Embassy and consulates general went to Vachira Phuket Hospital to offer condolences to the families of Chinese tourists killed in the capsizing incident, listened to their appeals and introduced the work done by the Chinese government.

Ambassador Lyu Jian said that President Xi Jinping and other leaders of the Party Central Committee and the State Council were very concerned about the safety of the Chinese compatriots, and made important instructions on searching for the missing, treating the injured, and handling the aftermath. In the past few days, the Chinese diplomatic missions in Thailand and the Chinese government's joint working group have been working at full steam to implement Chinese leaders' instructions. Following the principle of putting people first and conducting diplomacy for the people, we rushed to the search and rescue site immediately after learning about the incident, asked the Thai side to make utmost efforts in search, rescue and medical treatment, maintained close communication and coordination with the Thai side, and reached the following consensus:

First, to make every effort to search for the missing persons. The search and rescue operation will not stop until all the missing Chinese tourists are found. Second, to find out the cause of and persons accountable for the incident as soon as possible. The Chinese side should be engaged in the investigation, and the Thai side should only publish the findings after communicating with the Chinese side. Third, the Thai side should come up with a plan on addressing follow-up matters which could show their sincerity. The Chinese diplomatic missions and the joint working group have mobilized experienced local lawyers to provide assistance to the bereaved families and safeguard their legitimate rights and interests, and have also asked local volunteers and friendly figures to help. Fourth, the relevant departments of Thailand should take effective measures to strengthen tourism safety management, step up communication and cooperation with China, and prevent such incident from happening again. We will continue to work on the Thai side to make sure that they address the bereaved families' reasonable concerns.

The families of the victims thanked the Party Central Committee and the government for their care and help, and will safeguard their own rights in a rational way under the coordination of the Chinese diplomatic missions and the working group.

Up till now, 38 victims have been identified, and the families of 33 of them are now in Thailand. The Thai side pledges to take into full account the feelings of the families, provide all convenience as allowed by law and help them with the handling of the aftermath.

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