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Hangzhou's Police Officers Become Web Celebrities ahead of G20 Summit
Edited by Li Nan 

Pan Hongjiang, a traffic police officer in east China resort city of Hangzhou, has become an online celebrity for a video clip showing him giving travel tips in English.

A few days ago, Pan recorded a video after he found the city's scenic West Lake area had become very crowded and foreign visitors might need some help. He uploaded it to the official microblog of the local police bureau. It instantly became a hit.

Since then, he has attracted a following for his handsome looks and fluent English.

The 2016 Group of 20 summit will be held in Hangzhou on September 4 to 5. Visitors are swarming to the city and more police are patrolling the streets in preparation for the summit.

Police are known for being cold and staid, but a group of young and energetic officers in Hangzhou has shown another side of the police force on social media.

Pan is a member of the English service team of the local police department. He has been polishing his English skills to better serve tourists from across the world. "Hangzhou is going international, and so are we," he said.

Sina Weibo microblogger Li Xiaowen said on the social network that she saw a tourist drop his mobile phone into the city's West Lake. A policeman nearby immediately took off his shoes, got a ladder and went down into the lake to look for the phone.

At a checkpoint near West Lake, policeman Xu Jiong is dressed in a cartoon panda costume. He is so well loved that he gets his picture taken with more than 1,000 people per day.

Some officers are treated like pop stars. Pictures of Shi Mengpeng, who has been called the "most handsome police officer in Hangzhou" on Chinese social media, have gotten more than 1 million hits on Sina Weibo.

Of course, appearance alone is not enough to explain the policemen's popularity.

"They serve the people. That's why they are handsome," said a comment on Sina Weibo.

"They have worked very hard. I really admire them," said another.

Security officer Shi Cuilong has been working until three or four o'clock some mornings as the summit draws near. He often misses meals.

Shi arrived in Hangzhou two months ago from the southern Province of Hainan to help prepare for the summit. He has experience working at other international events.

"I am ready to learn more in Hangzhou this time. Many world leaders participate in the summit, which means high requirements for police work," he said.

(Xinhua News Agency September 2, 2016)

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