BEIJING, April 11 (Xinhuanet) -- China's national news
agency Xinhua Monday hosted a symposium to commemorate the 50th anniversary of
the "Kashmir Princess" incident, in which three Xinhua journalists were killed
in a failed attempt to murder then Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai by agents of
On April 11, 1955, a chartered Air-India plane named
the "Kashmir Princess" heading for Bandung, Indonesia from Hong Kong exploded
over the Pacific Ocean, killing all 11 passengers and five of the eight crew
members on board.
"Among them were three excellent journalists of
Xinhua, namely Shen Jiantu, Huang Zuomei and Li Ping," recalled Tian Congming,
Xinhua president at the Monday symposium. "Shen, who died at the age of 40, was
the eldest, while Li was only 26."
Tian went on to note that over the past 74 years
since the founding of Xinhua, more than 150 journalists and staff members ofthe
news agency had sacrificed their lives for performing their duties.
"They have made great contributions to the Chinese
people," said Tian, adding that the journalists of Xinhua, for one generation
after another, had "endured severe tests" and "made tremendous sacrifices" since
the agency's birth in the early 1930s.
He also mentioned Shao Yunhuan, the agency's latest
martyr who was killed in a NATO bombing of the Chinese embassy in Yugoslavia in
Declassified documents showed that the explosion of
the "Kashmir Princess" 50 years ago was caused by a time-bomb planted on the
plane by the Taiwan secret service, in an apparent attempt to assassinate
Premier Zhou. However, Zhou, who had planned to take the plane to attend the
Bandung Conference in Indonesia, was forced to change his schedule due to an
operation of appendicitis excision and thus had a narrow escape.
Eleven passengers on board, including three staff
members of the Chinese delegation to the Bandung Conference and five Chinese
journalists, one staff member of the delegation of the Democratic Republic of
Vietnam, one journalist from Poland and one journalist from Austria, died as the
explosion led to a fatal plane crash.
This year also marks the 50th anniversary of the
Bandung Conference. Sources with China's Foreign Ministry said a series of
activities would be held to mark the Conference, convened from April 18 to 24
with participants from 29 Asian and African countries.
The Conference was regarded as the first of its kind
to be organized independently by the Asian and African developing countries
without any involvement of the western colonialist nations. Enditem