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People & Points
Print Edition> People & Points
UPDATED: February 9, 2009 NO. 6 FEB. 12, 2009

Explorer in South Pole

Li Yuansheng, an experienced glaciologist and ice core specialist, has been named the first president of China's landmark Dome Argus (Dome A) Lab, also called the Kunlun Station, which is located at the highest and possibly coldest place in the South Pole.

Li is also director of the Glaciological Research Lab at the Shanghai-based Polar Research Institute of China (PRIC). After graduating with a bachelor's degree in geochemistry from Nanjing University, he joined the Chinese Academy of Geochemistry in 1986. In 1995, Li moved to the PRIC, focusing his studies on ice cores and the analysis of near-surface ice structure and stratification.

As a leading member of the Chinese Antarctic expedition team, Li spearheaded the 1,228-km expedition between China's Antarctic research base, Zhongshan Station and Dome A on five occasions after 1997, during which he amassed rich Antarctic experience.

In 2005, Li successfully led his team to reach Dome A at an altitude of 4,093 meters, where average temperatures are below minus 58 degrees Celsius, marking a milestone in the history of Chinese Antarctic expedition. This January, Li and his colleagues completed the construction of the first phase of the Kunlun Station.

New PLA Staff Chief

Senior military officer of the People's Liberation Army (PLA), naval Vice

Admiral Sun Jianguo, has been appointed as deputy chief of general staff. Sun previously held the post of assistant chief of general staff from December 2006.

The 57-year-old was born in Wuqiao, Hebei Province. After joining the armed forces at 16, he was selected to study navigation at the Qingdao-based Naval Submarine Academy, and later became a nuclear submariner.

Sun made a name for himself on a mid-1980s mission, during which he commanded Han 403 on a marathon 90-day undersea cruise, breaking the previous continuous undersea record set by USS Nautilus of 84 days. In December 2004, then 52-year-old Sun was appointed chief of naval staff. He was promoted to vice admiral in July 2006.

Action Hero a Good Samaritan

Chinese action star Jet Li scooped up this year's Crystal Award presented by the World Economic Forum during its annual meeting in Davos on January 31.

Li is a local of Beijing. After retiring from the Beijing Martial Arts Team with a dozen national titles, he burst onto the silver screen. His career as a kungfu actor initially began in 1982 with his debut in The Shaolin Temple. The Wong Fei Hung (a legendary Chinese hero) series called Once Upon a Time in China brought him sweeping popularity in Hong Kong in the 1990s. He has gone on to star in a number of Hollywood movies that later won him worldwide fame.

As a founder of the non-profit The One Foundation, the 46-year-old Li has been passionately engaged in philanthropy since 2004, in which he encountered the deadly tsunami in the Maldives when spending a vacation there with his family. Since the foundation was inaugurated in 2007, it has contributed to major world disaster relief efforts, including the devastating earthquake in southwest China's Sichuan Province in May 2008.

"The argument that a big power is bound to seek hegemony does not apply to China. Seeking hegemony goes against China's cultural tradition as well as the will of the Chinese people."

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao in his speech entitled "See China in the Light of Her Development" at the University of Cambridge on February 2

"A negative precedent set here in the United States can have repercussions around the globe and could provoke debilitating beggar-thy-neighbor policies."

Canadian Ambassador to the United States Michael Wilson, opposing a "Buy American" clause in U.S. Congress's version of President Barack Obama's stimulus plan that has sparked angry claims of protectionism from U.S. allies

"With this launch the Islamic Republic of Iran has officially achieved a presence in space."

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, announcing the country's launch of its first domestically manufactured satellite on February 2

"How can we not vote? All of us here have always complained about being oppressed and not having a leader who represented us. Now is our chance."

Abdul Hussein Nuri, an Iraqi voter in Basra, after participating in the country's first nationwide election in three years, which was also the most peaceful one since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003

"We are old friends, we have known each other in good [times] and bad, the ones when you really get to know friends best."

Raul Castro, the first Cuban president to visit Russia since the Cold War, opening a meeting with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev at the Kremlin on January 30, where the leaders pledged to elevate bilateral ties to the level of strategic partnership

"We have come out against neoliberal globalization, and now that this globalization is destroying itself, we have to define the world we want."

Candido Grzybowski, the organizer of the six-day World Social Forum that ended in Brazil on February 1, where around 100,000 activists, unionists, students, NGO members and pacifists attempted to reach common solutions on the global economic crisis and other issues

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