Close watch

Published: Friday 31 March 2006

China and Russia will jointly monitor cross-border rivers to ensure water quality. An agreement on the issue was recently signed in Bejing, following a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese prime minister Wen Jiabao in Kuala Lumpur last year. They had discussed the Songhua river chemical spill that occurred in November 2005 in China's Jilin province. The river flows into Russia, where the chemicals from the spill were detected in December 2005.

The waterbodies under joint surveillance will include the Heilong, Wusuli, Erguna and Suifen rivers and Xingkai lake. Under the pact, experts from both the countries would regularly exchange information and work together to prevent recurrence of such accidents.

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