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Monks help relief effort in China quake zone

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Monks help relief effort in China quake zone


Buddhist monks are mounting an unofficial relief effort after the deadly earthquake that struck China’s remote and moutainous Tibetan plateau. Some have journeyed hundreds of kilometres to join the search for bodies, cook food and tend to the dead.

Miracle rescues have happened but the chances of finding survivors are fading. Wednesday’s 6.9 magnitude quake in Qinghai province killed nearly 800 people and injured more than 11,000 others, according to official figures.

Touring the disaster zone, Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao urged rescue teams not to give up, even if hope is faint.

At a temple, turned into a makeshift morgue, monks chanted Tibetan Buddhist mantras.

As survivors spent a second night in the open, some locals said they believed the number of dead was much higher than has been officially recognised.

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