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China: race to rescue quake victims trapped in rubble

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China: race to rescue quake victims trapped in rubble


In China, teams of rescue workers are battling to save people who may still be alive in the rubble of collapsed houses, schools and office buildings after an earthquake struck the remote Qinghai province.

Emergency services from surrounding areas have been sent into the ethnically Tibetan Yushu County where officials say at least 400 people have been killed.

Seismologists recorded the main quake at a magnitude of 7.1 closely followed by a series of strong aftershocks.

The Director of China’s earthquake forecasting department Liu Jie said: “We are still expecting strong aftershocks. People should watch out for more aftershocks measuring at least a magnitude of six in the coming days.

“According to our information, airports and roads are damaged and this could get in the way of rescue efforts,” he added.

Up to 10,000 people are said to have been injured, many of them in urgent need of medical supplies.

China’s state news agency is reporting instances of pupils being trapped in the rubble of collapsed schools. Hundreds of soldiers have been deployed to assist the rescue operation.

The widespread collapse of school buildings caused anger and accusations of corruption after the 2008 earthquake in Sichuan province which killed 80,000 people.

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