On the Chinese Twitter-like microblogging website Sina Weibo, the news was viewed more than 900 million times and received 60,000 comments. Most users expressed shock and disbelief, with many sending their thoughts to the victims’ families.
“They travelled all that way, and died on the very last leg of their journey. I’m completely speechless,” one wrote.
“I cannot imagine how their families are feeling,” another commented. “They must be so fearful, not hearing from them for so long.”
Some were outraged over what they described as the “ineptitude” of the British police for failing to stop a repeat of a similar tragedy in 2000, when 58 Chinese citizens were discovered suffocated to death in a container in Dover.
One user said, “This is not the first time this tragedy has happened.
“History has repeated itself and the British authorities are to blame. This deserves serious investigation and serious punishment.”
Another person claimed the police “must not believe that Chinese lives are worth as much as British lives”.
“How could it have taken so long for these people to have been discovered?
“Why didn’t anyone hear their cries? Did no one care?”
One of the most popular forums focused on how the victims would have travelled from China into the UK, while thousands demanded a comprehensive investigation into the deaths immediately.
“I couldn’t sleep after reading the news,” one person wrote.
“The Chinese people need to find out the truth of the matter as soon as possible.”
There were however some who argued that the victims did not deserve such sympathy, because they had entered the lorry “willingly” in the hopes of reaching their “dreamland”.
One user wrote: “If they wanted to take such a perilous journey, then they should have been aware of the risks.
“There is a price to this British ‘fairytale’ myth and sadly, these 39 people paid it.”
The Chinese newspaper The Global Times wrote: “Imagine what thorough measures European countries would take if dozens of Europeans died in the same way?” In an article titled, “The UK must bear responsibility”.
The Chinese embassy in London has urged the British police to “find out the truth” and confirm the nationalities of the victims.
An embassy spokesman told Chinese media: “This is a shocking tragedy. We express our deep condolences to the families and friends of the victims.”
He added that China expected the UK to “conduct a comprehensive and thorough investigation”.
Daily Express :: World Feed