France welcomes two giant pandas from China
January 17, 2012
China recently agreed to lend two giant pandas to France in an act of diplomacy, according to Reuters. Huan Huan and Yuan Zi, both only three years old, were flown to France earlier this week, and they were escorted to the zoo they will call home for the next decade by a Republican Guard motorcade, just as though they were foreign dignitaries.
"We are giving them such a welcome because they represent part of China's national treasure," Rodolphe Delord, the head of ZooParc de Beauval, the new home of the pandas, told the news source. "When China agrees to lend pandas to a country, it's a great show of confidence and friendship."
The Associate Press reports that China has loaned pandas to other countries in the past to further political agendas and strengthen friendships with other nations. Just last month, two pandas were sent to a zoo in Edinburgh, Scotland, for a similar purpose.
People can make calls to China to talk to their friends and family about the government's adorable gestures of friendship.