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China steps up mail security measures for V-Day celebrations

Wang Xiaodong
Updated: Aug 10,2015 9:46 AM     China Daily

People sending parcels and express mail to Beijing during the period marking the 70th anniversary of victory in the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression will have to confirm their identity.

The State Post Bureau is also telling all postal companies to ensure that parcels and express mail undergo security scanning before being sent to the capital during this time, according to a statement on its website.

The celebrations, being held from Aug 20 to Sept 3, include a military parade in Tian’anmen Square on Sept 3.

On Aug 7, Ma Junsheng, head of the bureau, called for postal authorities in all six provincial-level areas surrounding Beijing to increase security measures to ensure the success of the celebrations, the statement said.

Yin Zhihua, an official at the bureau, said on Aug 9 that more details about the security may be released in coming days, including how long they will remain in force.

Only a few places in China, including the Ningxia Hui autonomous region, require senders of parcels or express mail to show their ID cards, Yin said.

Li Wei, an anti-terrorism expert at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, said parcels have been used for terrorist activities in many countries in the past, such as the 2001 anthrax attacks in the United States.

The anthrax spores were delivered by mailing letters to media organizations and senators. Five people were killed.

Li said, “The identity registration measure can ensure the safety of mail and parcels.”

China has taken a series of measures ahead of events scheduled to mark the wartime victory, which culminate in the military parade in Beijing.

At a security work conference attended by senior police officers from the capital and 13 provincial regions on Aug 4, Huang Ming, vice-minister of public security, called for increased security around Beijing to guarantee the safety of the military parade and the World Athletics Championships, being staged in the city at the end of this month.

He told police to intensify inspections of safety hazards, including fires and traffic accidents, and to strengthen patrols in key areas.

Cars will only be allowed on the capital’s roads on alternate days from Aug 20 to Sept 3 based on their license plate numbers, according to the authorities. The move is aimed at reducing pollution.

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