Xinhua Headlines: China identifies remains of Korean-War soldiers

The six martyrs were aged between 19 and 31 when they died in battle during the early 1950s.

It is the first time that the identities of unknown martyrs of the Chinese People’s Volunteers (CPV) were confirmed through DNA technology.

SHENYANG, Sept. 29 (Xinhua) — China on Sunday identified six Chinese soldiers killed in the 1950-53 Korean War whose remains were reburied in their homeland after being returned from the Republic of Korea (ROK).

It is the first time that the identities of unknown martyrs of the Chinese People’s Volunteers (CPV) were confirmed through DNA technology, according to Wang Shengqi, a researcher with the medical research institute under the Academy of Military Sciences of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army.

Relatives of six martyrs of the 1950-53 Korean War attend a ceremony at the cemetery of Korean War martyrs in Shenyang, capital of northeast China’s Liaoning Province, Sept. 29, 2019. (Xinhua/Yang Qing)

The six martyrs — Chen Zengji, Fang Hongyou, Hou Yongxin, Ran Xubi, Xu Yuzhong and Zhou Shaowu, were aged between 19 and 31 when they died in battle during the early 1950s.

They are among the 599 soldiers who have been sent back from the ROK and reburied in the cemetery of Korean War martyrs in Shenyang, capital of northeast China’s Liaoning Province since 2014.

It is technologically challenging to collect DNA samples and perform extraction and analysis work needed for identification as the remains have been buried for a long time and suffered from gradual microbial corrosion, according to the academy.

Relatives of the fallen heroes were invited to a ceremony held Sunday afternoon by the Ministry of Veterans Affairs at the Shenyang cemetery, with more than 200 people, including Korean War veterans attending. They received kinship certificates on the ceremony.

Chen Zengji, who died at 20 in 1950, remained young, bold and brave in the memory of 82-year-old Chen Hushan, who came to Shenyang with his family to find the name of his big brother on a martyr wall in the cemetery.

Chen Hushan searches for the name of his brother Chen Zengji on a martyr wall at the cemetery of Korean War martyrs in Shenyang, capital of northeast China’s Liaoning Province, Sept. 29, 2019. (Xinhua/Yang Qing)

“He fought bravely in several major battles during the Chinese People’s War of Liberation in the late 1940s,” Chen recalled. “He wrote us a letter from Hainan Island 70 years ago, and we haven’t heard of him ever since.”

Years later, the family was told of Chen Zengji’s death.

Chen said that his mother, who passed away in 1997, used to put a bowl of rice and a pair of chopsticks for his brother every year during the Spring Festival and the Mid-Autumn Festival, a time for family reunion traditionally.

“Finally, you come home,” Chen cried out at his brother’s coffin. The old veteran, in military uniform, carefully took out a wooden photo frame wrapped in silk. His brother, with a gun in his hand, looked dashing and spirited before the lens.

There even wasn’t a single picture left of Xu Yuzhong, who died at 30 in 1951 before his 64-year-old nephew Xu Tonghai was born.

Standing before the martyr wall where his uncle’s name was carved, Xu Tonghai put down a handful of soil, six apples, some dates and peanuts taken from their hometown for his uncle.

Relatives of martyr Xu Yuzhong mourn in front of the wall where Xu’s name was carved at the cemetery of Korean War martyrs in Shenyang, capital of northeast China’s Liaoning Province, Sept. 29, 2019. (Xinhua/Yang Qing)

When he was a kid, Xu Tonghai heard the story of his uncle from a talk between his father and a veteran who came back from the Korean battlefield. According to the veteran, the only words left by Xu Yuzhong was ‘see you in the afterlife’ before his company mounted a charge, and he never came back.

“The whole family is proud of him,” said 29-year-old Xu Gangming, Xu Yuzhong’s grandnephew.

Qian Feng, vice minister of veterans affairs, said in his speech that China and its people would never forget the unknown heroes who sacrificed their lives for the country and were buried in a foreign land.

Veterans attend a ceremony at the cemetery of Korean War martyrs in Shenyang, capital of northeast China’s Liaoning Province, Sept. 29, 2019. (Xinhua/Yang Qing)

The Ministry of Veterans Affairs launched an online campaign in early April to find the unknown heroes based on 24 personal seals found from more than 1,000 pieces of belongings of the deceased soldiers, including the six recently identified.

(Reporting by Ma Yunfei, Xu Yang, Wang Bingkun)

(Video reporter: Gao Ming; Video editor: Lin Lin)

Daha Fazla Göster

İlgili Makaleler

Bir cevap yazın

Başa dön tuşu

Reklam Engelleyici Algılandı

Biz, bağımsız yayın kuruluşu olarak, size sunduğumuz hizmetin maliyetini, reklam gelirleri ile karşılıyıoruz. Reklam gelirlerimizii artırmamıza yardımcı olun.