China is calling for joint efforts to counter human smuggling after the discovering in Britain of 39 dead people believed to be Chinese migrants.
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a daily briefing on Friday that China could not yet confirm the victims’ nationalities or identities but was working in cooperation with local authorities.
Human smuggling from China is believed to have fallen drastically in recent years amid a rapidly growing domestic economy. However, some Chinese, particularly those with lower education levels, continue to be drawn to Europe and North America by the promise of much higher wages than they can earn at home, despite the considerable risks involved.
Parts of China, especially the southeastern province of Fujian, have long histories of sending migrants abroad.