China-Africa relations

Burnt bodies of three Chinese factory workers found in Nigeria

  • Diplomats in Lagos urge police to step up investigations into ‘cruel’ murder
PUBLISHED : Sunday, 23 December, 2018, 6:56pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 23 December, 2018, 11:13pm

Police in Nigeria are investigating the murder of three Chinese people whose burnt bodies were found in Lagos over a week ago.

According to the official radio station of Zhejiang province, the three Chinese victims were employees at a furniture factory in Nigeria’s largest city owned by a businessman from Ruian city and they were killed “in a cruel manner” on December 15.

The three people went missing after dinner and their bodies were found the next day, the factory owner, surnamed He, told the station.

Two of the victims, surnamed Zhang and Hong, came from Zhejiang province while the third, named Sun, was from Shandong.

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The Chinese consulate-general said on Saturday that the circumstances of the case were “complicated” without providing further elaboration.

“It took [local police] hours to find them, their bodies were badly burned. The way they were treated was extremely cruel,” the factory owner told the radio station.

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Chinese diplomats have urged local authorities to step up the investigation, said the consulate-general’s statement.

China has close political and trade ties with Nigeria, with roughly one-third of its foreign direct investment coming from China in 2016.

According to Chinese ambassador to Nigeria Zhou Pingjian, there are about 40,000 to 50,000 Chinese people in the African country, mostly Chinese workers and businessmen as well as people of Chinese descent.