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Jun 11 2021

Chinese official ‘plunges to his death’ as investigation into ultramarathon tragedy intensifies

Chinese official ‘plunges to his death’ as investigation into ultramarathon tragedy intensifies

A county official in China has reportedly taken his own life as the investigation into the tragic deaths of 21 marathon runners in Yellow River Stone Forest park last month intensifies, according to local state media.

CCTV said police had been notified on Wednesday that a man jumped from his apartment before dying.

Upon further investigation, he was identified as Jingtai County Communist Party Secretary Li Zuobi with homicide already ruled out.

Also on Friday, the provincial government in Gansu punished 27 officials in relation to the tragedy.

Li was posthumously exempted, but his deputy Zhang Wengling was fired.

Two other officials, who are low-ranking, have been detained. But others were handed a range of administrative punishments, demerits, warnings and demotions.

A report ordered and issued by Gansu province found that there had been a lack of adequate planning put in place for the event which occurred on May 22.

Additionally, organizers also failed to respond effectively as soon as freezing rain and strong gale-force winds struck on the mountainside where the runners had been competing on the 62-mile track at altitudes of up to 9,800 feet.

Though the race had been held on numerous occasions, its competitors in this latest edition were caught out by the cold weather in shorts and thin clothing, as well as tough conditions on unpaved paths. 

Thankfully 50 of the 170 total runners were saved by heroic shepherds that gave them shelter, before a huge all-night rescue mission returned them to safety as many were hospitalized.

Also on rt.com ‘I’m just an ordinary person’: Humble shepherd hailed as hero for saving six in China marathon tragedy that claimed 21 lives

According to reports, compensation of $150,000 has already been offered for each victim.

Yet relatives have rejected the amount while claiming that many who lost their lives – such as the well-known Liang Jung who once won the Gobi Desert 100-kms race, were the breadwinners of their families.

And now it remains to be seen how they react to relatively light punishment for the officials too barring Li’s tragic demise.

FORUM

Chinese official ‘plunges to his death’ as investigation into ultramarathon tragedy intensifies Chinese official ‘plunges to his death’ as investigation into ultramarathon tragedy intensifies Chinese official ‘plunges to his death’ as investigation into ultramarathon tragedy intensifies Chinese official ‘plunges to his death’ as investigation into ultramarathon tragedy intensifies

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