Chinese premier visits earthquake disaster zone
ZHAOTONG (AFP) - Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on Saturday visited earthquake victims in south-west China after twin tremors left at least 80 people dead and hundreds more injured, state media reported.
Television pictures showed Mr Wen, who arrived late on Friday, in a tent with survivors in the remote and mountainous area, where crippled infrastructure was complicating efforts to assess the full scale of the disaster.
Mr Wen, who is a popular figure in China and is often shown lending his support in disaster zones, made a speech at an emergency centre surrounded by rescuers, a day after twin 5.6-magnitude quakes struck the poorly developed region.
A spokesman with the provincial civil affairs department meanwhile warned the toll could climb further because impassable roads and downed communications were making it difficult to collect information.