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September 29, 2009

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Huge effort to ensure a safe holiday

The Chinese government has called for greater efforts to maintain public order and social stability so that all citizens can celebrate the National Day holiday peacefully.

Central government departments and local governments must resolve the difficulties of low-income urban and rural residents as well as those affected by natural disasters, said a statement released by China's State Council.

Authorities are also required to step up security measures in key regions, Xinhua news agency reported.

Organizers of major celebrations must carry out tight security controls, monitor venues and establish emergency plans, the Cabinet said.

It also warned of risks brought by swine flu and urged authorities to make sure all possible preventive measures were put in place.

Special checks should be conducted in the mining, dangerous chemical, construction and power industries, as well as on fireworks and in crowded public places, the Cabinet said.

All government departments are urged to maintain sound market order by ensuring market supply and monitoring prices, Xinhua said.

The Cabinet called for special efforts to ensure the efficient transport of major production materials, including coal and oil, and to guarantee supplies of water, electricity, gas and gasoline.

The government has planned a series of celebrations to mark the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China on Thursday, including a military parade and mass performance in Beijing's Tian'anmen Square.

This year's eight-day National Day holiday will run one day longer than in previous years because it coincides with the Mid-Autumn Festival, which falls on Sunday this year.

Security personnel are in position to ensure a safe holiday in the nation's capital, Beijing police said yesterday.

The anti-terror forces that safeguarded the Beijing Olympics last year are in action again, and more than 7,000 police officers and militia members are on patrol in the Chinese capital.

Massive traffic controls and security checks are designed to keep "all unstable factors" out of Beijing.

Armored vehicles will patrol the streets and other key areas, officials said.

Additional crackdowns on violence, property violations, unlicensed cabs, prostitution and gambling will also take place during the holiday to improve public security in Beijing.

In addition, the Beijing Capital International Airport will ban flights between 9:30am and 12:30pm on Thursday.

Also watching the skies will be the city's meteorological authorities, who will be ready to disperse any rain clouds that threaten to interrupt the celebrations. They reported success in using airplanes and rockets to ward off rain before the opening and closing ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics.

Rain is expected tomorrow night in Beijing, and the weather for the next day is uncertain.

President Hu Jintao's keynote speech on Thursday morning will kick off the celebrations starting with the centerpiece military parade followed by the mass pageant, involving 200,000 citizens and 60 floats.


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