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June 27, 2017

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All eyes on Yunnan quake, not scandal: Chinese Red Cross

With Beijing police having ruled out any link between China's Red Cross and a self-confessed criminal, the Chinese Red Cross Foundation (CRCF) is calling for attention to be paid to the Yunnan earthquake rather than the earlier scandal, China News Service reported.

The CRCF published several microblog posts, saying it is very hard to eliminate the influence of rumors and doubts from the past three years, but in a key time of earthquake rescue work, "please forget Guo Meimei."

In mid-2011, a young woman named Guo Meimei used social media to claim she was a manager of an organization under the charity, and openly flaunted her wealth and extravagance.

Her posts triggered concern over how donations are used by the country's state-run charitable organizations and dealt a major blow to the reputation of the Red Cross Society of China. The RCSC has been struggling to win back trust since the scandal.

Guo was arrested for participation in illegal World Cup gambling activities on July 10. She confessed her crimes to the police, including being deeply involved with illegal gambling and spreading rumors about the RCSC, Xinhua News Agency reported.

"Actually, none of my relatives and friends, including my ex-boyfriend Wang (Jun) were staff members of the RCSC. I also didn't know anyone from the Red Cross," Guo said. "I made a huge mistake to gratify my vanity."

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