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Updated Information on Quake Relief in China

May 14, 2008

According to Xinhua News, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao again held a meeting of the disaster relief headquarters under the State Council Tuesday/May 13th evening and said that saving lives is still the major task of current relief work against a major quake which jolted southwest China's Sichuan Province on Monday afternoon.

Premier Wen urged to seize opportunities to rescue people, reduce casualties, and resume roads to the quake-hit areas as soon as possible by all means.

---800 armed police start rescue operation in quake-hit SW China

After 30 hours' hard journey via every means possible-by boot, by water rafts,or by air despite the dangerous landslide in the rain and the rock barriers on 70% of the roads, more than 800 armed police arrived by 8 a.m. Wednesday at Wenchuan, epicenter of the disaster, and started rescue operation and collect data/information of this region in southwest China's Sichuan Province that was hit by a massive earthquake Monday afternoon.

*Several hundreds of the trapped were rescued by the afternoon of Wednesday.

---Chinese army airdrops disaster relief goods to Wenchuan

As of 12 a.m. Wednesday, two helicopters of the Chinese Liberation Army (PLA) has airdropped food, drinking water and medicine to the quake-hit Yingxiu Township of Wenchuan County, epicenter of Monday quake measuring 7.8 on Richter scale in southwest China's Sichuan Province.

Three more helicopters carrying disaster relief goods are also en route to Yingxiu.

---Troops, Xinhua staff arrive at township worst hit by quake

More than 200 soldiers have arrived at Yingxiu township, one of the worst-hit areas near the epicenter of Monday's deadly earthquake.

    They are engaged in search and rescue work.

    Four Xinhua reporters traveled with the soldiers and reached the site 44 hours after the quake. They were the first journalists on the scene.

    According to He Biao, deputy secretary-general of the Aba prefectural government, the population of Yingxiu was more than 10,000.

    Only some 2,300 people have been confirmed as alive, and 1,000 of those have sustained serious injuries.

"Medical staff, medicine, food and drinking water are in urgent need," He said.

----As of 7PM Tuesday, 12,012 deaths were reported according to the disaster relief center under the State Council. There were 7841 reportedly missing.

---At 5:15 PM Wednesday, Premier Wen Jiabao was heading for Wenchuan, the epicenter of the quake by helicopter to direct the further relief work.

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