By Sun Xiaoshun and Wang Hongyang
URUMQI, Aug. 30 -- The first echelon's 200 peacekeepers of China's 9th peacekeeping force to Mali have returned to China after completing their one-year peacekeeping mission in Mali. Two transport aircraft Y-20 carrying the 200 Chinese peacekeepers arrived at the Urumqi Diwopu International Airportin in Urumqi, capital of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, on the evening of August 28.
The 9th Chinese peacekeeping force to Mali consists of a guard contingent, an engineering contingent and a medical contingent. The total of 413 peacekeepers of the three contingents were all awarded the United Nations Peace Medal of Honor on July 28 by the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) before returning to China.
Mali features volatile security situation, frequent terrorist attacks and harsh natural environment. During the one-year mission period in Gao, Sector East of the MINUSMA, the guard contingent successfully handled many emergent cases the engineering contingent completed 53 construction tasks, the medical contingent received more than 3,000 patients and provided effective medical service support for the peacekeepers and UN staff in the Sector East of the MINUSMA.