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China: Dozens Of Kidnapped Children Freed
Chinese police have rescued 92 children and two women kidnapped by a human-trafficking gang and arrested 301 suspects.
In one of the biggest operations of its kind in years police simultaneously swooped on locations in 11 provinces after a six-month investigation.
Police also found sleeping pills used for the babies in the process of trafficking.
The raids were reported by China Central Television and state news agency Xinhua, quoting the Ministry of Public Security.
Police investigations started in March with a child trafficking case in central China's Henan Province.
They found members of the network followed a clear pattern, with kidnappers collecting children in southwest China's Yunnan and Sichuan provinces.
They were then driven to other regions into the hands of sellers, according to the statement released by the Ministry.
The freed children have been sent to hospitals for checkups and some of them have been handed over to a children's home in Zhengzhou, Henan Province.
Zhang Wenli, head of Zhengzhou Children's Welfare Home, said: "Our childcare workers have been professionally trained, so they know how to communicate with the babies, and know how to comfort and rear them.
"Meanwhile, we are working together with hospital staff to cure these children's diseases."
Before their biological parents are identified, the freed children will stay at the home, Ms Zhang added.
A traditional preference for boys, especially in rural areas, and a strict one-child policy have contributed to a rise in the trafficking of children and women in recent years.
State media did not give a breakdown of how many boys and girls were taken.
Kidnapped women are sold to men in remote areas who are unable to find brides because of a shortage of women blamed on the one-child policy.
The government will impose harsh punishments on people who buy kidnapped children, as well as parents who allow them to be sold, state television said.
China has trumpeted the success of an intensified crackdown on the kidnapping and sale of children and women.
In 2011, police said they had rescued more than 13,000 abducted children and 23,000 women over the past two years or so.
The latest arrests happened on September 11 but no reason was given for the delay in reporting the operation.