Nation's heroes honored at solemn Beijing events

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Party and State leaders honor deceased national heroes Monday on Martyrs' Day at Tian'anmen Square in Beijing. During the ceremony, soldiers placed flower baskets on the Monument to the People's Heroes. [FENG YONGBIN / CHINA DAILY]

The top leadership of the Communist Party of China and State led by President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, paid tribute on Monday to the heroes who sacrificed their lives for national independence and for the well-being of the people.

The other leaders included Li Keqiang, Li Zhanshu, Wang Yang, Wang Huning, Zhao Leji, Han Zheng and Wang Qishan.

Before the ceremony at Tian'anmen Square in Beijing, the leaders visited Chairman Mao Memorial Hall, the final resting place of chairman Mao Zedong. They bowed three times toward Mao's seated statue and paid their respects to his remains.

The event was held on Martyrs' Day, on the eve of National Day. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.

More than 4,000 representatives from all walks of life gathered in front of the Monument to the People's Heroes at Tian'anmen Square, including elderly veterans and retired senior officials, relatives of martyrs, honorees of national medals and honorary titles, students and children.

A military band played trumpets to honor the martyrs. All participants sang the national anthem and then observed a moment of silence for the national heroes.

After a chorus of the song of Chinese Young Pioneers sung by more than 300 schoolchildren, 18 honor guards laid nine flower baskets in front of the monument.

Xi straightened the red ribbons on the baskets and led a group of senior officials in a walk around the monument in tribute to the heroes. Other attendees laid flowers on the monument.

The foundation stone of the Monument to the People's Heroes was laid on Sept 30, 1949.

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