Afghan gov't is thankful to China over sending humanitarian assistance: Minister

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Chinese Ambassador to Afghanistan Yao Jing (2nd L) and Afghan State Minister for Disaster Management and Humanitarian Affairs Wais Ahmad Barmak (3rd L) attend the handover ceremony of humanitarian consignments at an airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Feb. 19, 2017. Afghan State Minister for Disaster Management and Humanitarian Affairs Wais Ahmad Barmak expressed his gratitude to China over sending humanitarian consignments to Afghanistan on Sunday. A consignment of Chinese assistance including tents, overcoat and quilts worth 137.1 million afghanis dollars (some 2 million U.S. dollars) was formally handed over to Afghan government at a ceremony attended among others by Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing here at the airport. (Xinhua/Dai He)

KABUL, Feb. 19 (Xinhua) -- Afghan State Minister for Disaster Management and Humanitarian Affairs, Wais Ahmad Barmak expressed his gratitude to China over sending humanitarian consignments to Afghanistan on Sunday.

"On behalf of the government and the people of Afghanistan, I express my heartfelt thanks to the People's Republic of China and we Afghans are thankful to China over its assistance," Barmak told reporters after receiving the consignment at the handover ceremony here at Kabul airport.

A consignment of Chinese assistance including tents, overcoat and quilts worth 137.1 million afghanis dollars (some 2 million U.S. dollars) was formally handed over to Afghan government at a ceremony attended among others by Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing here at the airport.

Minister Barmak said that China has always timely responded to Afghan demands to help the natural disaster-affected people, adding China dispatched generous assistances in 2015, in 2016 and so far in 2017.

"We received humanitarian assistance worth around 2 million U.S. dollars today and another consignment would reach here on Feb. 25," the official added.

He also noted that China would help to build low cost houses for the returnees, besides assisting to rebuild the houses of the natural disaster-affected people.

Speaking on the occasion, Chinese ambassador to Afghanistan, besides expressing solidarity with the people and government of Afghanistan, also hoped that the assistance provided by China could reach the disaster affected areas and people as soon as possible.

"Our president and premier both wrote a letter to express solidarity to President Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah, our government prepared this relief materials during our Spring Festival holidays," said Yao.

More than 170 people including women and children have lost their lives due to snowfall and chilly weather elsewhere in Afghanistan over the past nearly three weeks and hundreds of houses have been destroyed or partially damaged.