China media: Malaysia abduction
- 4 April 2014
- From the section China
China-Malaysia ties continue to dominate discussions in newspapers amid the abduction a Chinese national in Sabah.
A Chinese tourist and a hotel worker were abducted by gunmen from a holiday resort in eastern Malaysia on Wednesday.
The incident comes amid rising negative sentiment over the safety of Chinese tourists in Malaysia, following the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines jet MH370.
The Beijing Youth Daily notes that some media outlets in Malaysia have quoted Prime Minister Najib Razak as saying that the abduction might be a deliberate act to sour Sino-Malaysian ties.
However, Xu Liping, a researcher from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, tells the Beijing Times that such incidents "happen from time to time, as the abductors are doing it mainly for money and not so much for political reasons".
The China Daily quotes a travel specialist as saying that the incident is bound to affect Malaysia's tourism market.
"Chinese people like to vacation in Malaysia for holidays because it is affordable and nearby. The missing MH370 plane and this incident has undoubtedly made matters worse," Liu Ying, from Tianjin Jinsheng International Travel Agency, tells the paper.
Meanwhile, Huang Huikang ,the Chinese ambassador to Kuala Lumpur, blames the "Western media" for "spreading rumours" and "making use of the weak emotions of the victims' families to sow discord between Malaysia and China", according to reports.
Echoing similar sentiments, the Global Times comments that the news of the abduction together with the missing plane incident "offer opportunities for Western media to stir up Sino-Malaysia bilateral relations".
"But the bilateral relations won't be easily derailed," it adds.
The paper acknowledges that the Chinese public are dissatisfied with the way Malaysian authorities have handled the crisis.
"There is much confusion in public opinion, particularly on the internet. These voices pose challenges to the nation's core interests. However, the authorities would not be swayed by populism as it is their responsibility towards the country and the people," it says.
Tomb Sweeping Festival
Elsewhere, China's frontline police officers will receive trainings on how to use firearms "more confidently" to protect the people, reports say.
According to the China Police Daily, many police officials are unwilling to use guns even when they are faced with violence.
The Southern Metropolis Daily explains that the police officers are unsure of their rights on when they could use a gun.
Wei Yongzhong, a professor from People's Public Security University of China, tells the paper that such training would improve the competency level of the police and help them better deal with terrorism and security issues.
And finally, media are advocating a greener Qingming Festival as people are getting ready to pay respect to their ancestors or deceased relatives over the weekend.
Qingming, or the Tomb Sweeping Festival, was declared as a statutory holiday in 2008. Chinese people usually visit graves or burial grounds of their ancestors and burn joss papers as a ceremony.
An article on the Beijing Times says it is time for a "cleaner and fresher Qingming" and urges people to replace firecrackers and burning of paper with flowers.