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Amatrice, Italy: 'people don't want to abandon homes' after quake

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Amatrice, Italy: 'people don't want to abandon homes' after quake

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Euronews correspondent Raquel Alvarez has reached Amatrice in central Italy, where at least 190 people died and rescue efforts have been in full swing following Wednesday morning’s earthquake. We joined her from Lyon.

Francisco Fuentes, Euronews:
“They’d installed tents for survivors to spend the night, yet some preferred to sleep on the streets or in their cars…”

Raquel Alvarez, Amatrice:
“People did not want to leave, they don’t want to abandon their homes, or what remains of their homes, psychologically it is difficult to convince them to move away. That’s why they prefer to stay in the car, even though it’s difficult to understand it’s a psychological barrier. Those who can, try to rejoin their families and friends, or try to find a solution away from the area hit by the earthquake. We ourselves in the euronews team who came here yesterday (Wednesday), we tried to reach the hotel we had booked to sleep for two or three hours – and when we got there we found it closed because the owners had abandoned it, precisely because of the fear of aftershocks, and they’d gone to Rome, for example, or away from this area.”

Euronews:
“As happens in this type of disaster, there are thousands of volunteers from all over Italy and the rest of Europe who are working in the field. Have you had a chance to talk to them? What are they saying?”

Raquel Alvarez, Amatrice:
“Everyone is shocked, everyone wants to help, I have met very young people who have come from outside Italy, from Poland – also Italians who have travelled here with shocked expressions trying to help. The authorities are trying to calm people down, saying that there are already enough security forces, there are already many volunteers and that emergency work is advancing properly, so there’s no need for more people. There are 5,000 people now operational in the field and also I think that although some 4,000 tents are available, only just over 1,000 have been used so far. The work of volunteers is appreciated above all for moral reasons; but to tell the truth there’s no need for more volunteers, the work must be left to those who can and should carry it out.”

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