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Strong quake kills at least 367 in southern China



By JACK CHANG

BEIJING (AP) - A strong earthquake in southern China's Yunnan province toppled thousands of homes on Sunday, killing at least 367 people and injuring more than 1,800.

About 12,000 homes collapsed in Ludian, a densely populated county located around 366 kilometers (277 miles) northeast of Yunnan's capital, Kunming, China's official Xinhua News Agency reported.

The magnitude-6.1 quake struck at 4:30 p.m. at a depth of 10 kilometers (6 miles), according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Its epicenter was in Longtoushan township, 23 kilometers (14 miles) southwest of the city of Zhaotong, the Ludian county seat.

Earthquake Kills At Least 150 People In Southwestern China

Ma Liya, a resident of Zhaotong, told Xinhua that the streets there were like a "battlefield after bombardment." She added that her neighbor's house, a new two-story building, had toppled, and said the quake was far worse than one that struck the area in 2012 and killed 81 people.

"The aftermath is much, much worse than what happened after the quake two years ago," Ma said. "I have never felt such strong tremors before. What I can see are all ruins."

Xinhua said at least 367 people were killed in the quake, with 1,881 injured.

Most of the deaths - 357 - were in Zhaotong City, Xinhua said. Another 10 people were killed in Quijing City.

News reports said rescuers were still trying to reach victims in more remote towns Sunday night.

Photos on Weibo, China's Twitter-like social media site, showed rescuers searching through flattened buildings and people injured amid toppled bricks.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon offered "his condolences to the Chinese Government and the families of those killed," according to a statement from his office. The statement said the U.N. is ready to "lend its assistance to efforts to respond to humanitarian needs" and "to mobilize any international support needed."

Many of the homes that collapsed in Ludian, which has a population of about 429,000, were old and made of brick, Xinhua said, adding that electricity and telecommunications were cut off in the county.

The mountainous region where the quake occurred is largely agricultural, with farming and mining the top industries, and is prone to earthquakes.

Relief efforts were underway, with more than 2,500 troops dispatched to the disaster region, Xinhua said. The Red Cross Society of China allocated quilts, jackets and tents for those made homeless by the quake, while Red Cross branches in Hong Kong, Macau and neighboring Sichuan province also sent relief supplies.

Chinese state broadcaster CCTV said the quake was the strongest to hit Yunnan in 14 years.

In 1970, a magnitude-7.7 earthquake in Yunnan killed at least 15,000 people, and a magnitude-7.1 quake in the province killed more than 1,400 in 1974. In September 2012, 81 people died and 821 were injured in a series of quakes in the Yunnan region.

In May 2008, a powerful quake in Sichuan province left nearly 90,000 people dead or missing.

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1000|Char. 1000  Char.
DarlnDar August 03 2014 at 10:39 AM

PRAYERS GOING OUT FOR THE VICTIM'S & THEIR FAMILIES!! FROM THE USA

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3 replies
m4christ2 August 03 2014 at 10:26 AM

earthquakes grow in size and are happening more and more often. these, along with all the weather and volcano activities, etc. show us the earth is in labor pains for the coming of Christ. look up. He's coming soon.

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7 replies
xinglisan August 03 2014 at 10:51 AM

I don't think they give the actual facts of the stats of those killed, injured, or missing...out of shame. They are densely populated with no redevelopment from the last tragic earthquake. It's all about commodity and greed, and not the safety of the citizens. Very Very sad. Poor people.

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1 reply
Lindsay xinglisan August 03 2014 at 6:41 PM

Sorry, your opinion means nothing

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quincy_maxwell August 03 2014 at 11:52 AM

Sad. I lived in China for awhile, and while they are making vast improvements to their infrastructure, a lesson we could take from them, they sill have a long way to go. They are kind, loving and caring people and accepting of everyone. Another lesson we could learn from them.

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1 reply
Monti quincy_maxwell August 04 2014 at 12:32 AM

R U f''n kidding me? These barbarians have squads of men who go around beating people's pet dogs to death in front of them!
What is kind, loving and caring about that? They are barbarian heathens.

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1 reply
janetesq Monti August 04 2014 at 12:50 AM

So none are loving and caring based on your sound empirical evidence? It's great how you dismiss a entire group of people including innocent children who just went through a terrible tragedy and preach about being who is or isn't loving and caring.

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buddwhyzr August 03 2014 at 10:28 AM

Still they have no modern building codes. After the 2 quakes in the '70's they just keep rebuilding with the same methods hoping for a different result.

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1 reply
Madeline buddwhyzr August 03 2014 at 10:41 AM

If China isn't trying to modernize building codes that would be really awful. 6.1 really isn't that strong, at least not in California. At least one thing that California seems able to do is upgrade and enforce building codes.

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Pat August 03 2014 at 12:42 PM

Oh goody ... MORE refugees who will flock to the USA with open arms !!!

Make sure you book reservations through the Coyotes in Mexico .....

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1 reply
ElectricXebra5 Pat August 03 2014 at 2:29 PM

Wow! Who and What do you think MADE America???
Dumb A$$!!!

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Viper1ex19 August 03 2014 at 11:52 AM

Luke 21:11 -
And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven.

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3 replies
debnaert August 03 2014 at 2:04 PM

I suppose they're going to BLAME the USA.

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1 reply
Lindsay debnaert August 03 2014 at 6:47 PM

And republicans will blame Obama.

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rbinhood0063 August 03 2014 at 10:22 AM

With all that we hear about the death toll, I wonder if China even cares how many died ? Makes you wonder - doesn't it ?? Less to feed ..,.

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3 replies
grainman1955 August 03 2014 at 11:30 AM

My thought and prayers to the people caught in the earthquake.

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