02/08/2018, 12.06
CHINA
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Shaanxi: 12-year-old girl sells her hair to buy a smartphone and contact her migrant mother

The little He Jingling is one of the 61 million children "left behind" by their parents, who go to the cities to work. Her grandparents can earn 921 euros a year. At least 40 million children marked by "relative poverty". Xi Jinping promised to eradicate it by 2020.

Hong Kong (AsiaNews / Agencies) - He Jingling, 12, has become a national heroine after Jiangsu's television told how the little girl sold her hair to buy a smartphone just to be able to contact her mother, a migrant who works in the big city.

"My hair was long enough to reach my hip,” she told the TV station “This is the biggest income I have contributed to my family.” ".

The girl sold her hair for 300 yuan (about 40 euros) to buy the phone and be able to see her mother via video.

Mummy is far away. She doesn’t have much money to spend on phone calls, so we can’t speak too long on the phone." "I can’t see her face during phone calls anyway and so it was better not to call."

He Jingling's mother, after a divorce, had to migrate to look for work; the little girl stays with her grandparents in the Shaanxi countryside. They live with a small herd of chickens and a patch of land where they grow medicinal herbs. Altogether, the family’s annual income is around 7 thousand yuan a year (about 921 euro).

According to the government, there are at least 61 million children in China "left behind" by parents who emigrate for work reasons.

A study by the Beijing Normal University states that about 40 million children (16.7% of all Chinese children) live in the same situation as He Jingling, in "relative poverty".

"Relative poverty" in rural areas is defined when the annual income of a family is less than 4213 yuan per person (550 euros); in the city, when it is less than 9659 yuan (1270 euros).

President Xi Jinping has promised that he will eradicate poverty in the countryside by 2020.

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