33 foreign tourists evacuated from quake-hit Wolong, Sichuan


May 16, 2008

33 tourists from the UK, the United States and France arrived in Chengdu, the Sichuan capital, yesterday after being evacuated by military helicopter from quake-hit Wolong. ( Map )

The tourists, who had been stranded since Monday in the town of Wenchuan, arrived just after 11 am. They were all said to be in good health.

Yang Wei, the captain of the helicopter, said: "They were anxious when we arrived in Wolong, but soon relaxed after getting on the chopper."

The relieved tourists gave the thumbs up to the helicopter crew as they left the aircraft.

Zhang Wenxiang, an official from the Wolong Giant Panda Administration, said on Wednesday that all of the tourists and journalists stranded in the town, 50 of them foreigners, were safe.

They were moved to a hotel after the quake struck, he said.

The telecommunications network in Wolong, which is famous for its Giant Panda Protection and Research Center, has been down since Monday.

source: Xinhua News Agency

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