This article is part of a series that will be released before the end of 2015, drawing from The Contour‘s annual print issue titled Upheaval, Revolution & Tragedy: The World of 2015, which can be found online at The Contour: Print Edition
On April 25th, 2015, an earthquake in Nepal, classified as a 7.8 on the Richter Scale, killed over 9,000 people, and injured 23,000 more. Nepal is situated between India and China, and tremors were felt as far south as Karnataka, India, and as far North as districts in Southwestern China. This tragedy prompted a quick international response, largely from China. The day after the earthquakes, Chinese medical and rescue teams were already on the ground to assist in aid and relief, and President Xi Jinping pledged “all necessary disaster assistance” to the Nepalese people, and an additional 20 million yuan in survival materials. Some claim that China’s swift aid was motivated solely due to China’s use of Nepal to intimidate Tibetan refugees. But China in recent years has stepped up its desire to be more involved in Asian politics. This initiative, called One Belt, One Road, is focused on cooperation and hospitality between Asian countries. At the least, China continues to back Nepal’s recovery, pledging 1.3 million liters of oil to the Nepalese people after India cut off exports in October.
by Anoushka Kiyawat ’18