Patients queue for access to the Chinese medical team for physical checks in Ulan Bator, Mongolia, June 26, 2019. (Xinhua/Suriya)
A medical team from China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region has conducted 100 free surgeries to Mongolian cataract patients here during the week through Tuesday, said the Mongolian Red Cross Society (MRCS) on Wednesday.
The service is part of a project called "The Belt and Road (B&R)-Brightness Trip" which was officially launched here on Wednesday.
"Mongolia and China are longstanding close and friendly neighbors. I am happy that many Mongolian citizens have regained their sight thanks to the project co-implemented by red cross societies of the two countries," Nyamaa Enkbold, president of the MRCS and defense minister of Mongolia, said at the launching ceremony of the project.
He expressed his heart-felt thanks to the Chinese side.
The Brightness Trip project with the aim to help Mongolians who are suffering from cataract to regain their sight is part of the celebration of the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Mongolia.
"For many years, the Red Cross Society of China (RCSC) has maintained friendly exchanges and close cooperation with the MRCS," Liang Huiling, standing vice president of the RCSC, said at the launching ceremony.
"Especially, the Red Cross Society of China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region has conducted fruitful cooperation with MRCS in many areas such as disaster relief and HIV/AIDS prevention thanks to the autonomous region's geographical and cultural advantages," Liang said.
Liang noted that the project would target a total of 1,000 Mongolian patients in the next five years.
Cataract is a common degenerative eye disease, usually affecting people aged over 60. Clouding of eye lens leads to vision impairment or loss.
About 1.5 percent of Mongolia's 3.2 million people have vision loss and cataract is the most common cause of their vision loss, according to the country's Health Ministry.