|The combined photo taken on Feb. 21, 2014 shows giant pandas "Hao Hao"(L) and "Xing Hui" at a breeding center in southwest China's Sichuan Province. Two giant pandas "Xing Hui", the male, and "Hao Hao", the female, both 4 years old, are leaving for Belgium's Pairi Daiza Zoo on Feb. 22. They will spend the next 15 years there, the longest time China's panda would live overseas. (Xinhua/Xue Yubin)|
CHENGDU, Feb. 22 -- A pair of giant pandas are leaving for Belgium Saturday, on lease from a breeding center in southwest China's Sichuan Province.
Hundreds of people attended a ceremony on Saturday morning to see the two pandas off at the China Conservation and Research Center for Giant Pandas, who are bound for Belgium's Pairi Daiza Zoo for a scientific research program.
Xing Hui, the male, and Hao Hao, the female, are both four years old and will stay in Belgium for the next 15 years, as announced during Belgian Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo's September visit to China.
The pair will leave the center after the ceremony.
They are expected to arrive in Brussels on Sunday by charted DHL aircraft, via Bahrain.