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China quake toll nears 600 as volunteers told to stay away

Published on Aug 6, 2014 5:41 PM
 

LONGTOUSHAN, China (AFP) - The death toll from an earthquake that devastated a remote region of China jumped to nearly 600 people on Wednesday, authorities said, as volunteer rescuers were warned away.

Rescue efforts in the south-western province of Yunnan, where the 6.1-magnitude quake struck Sunday, were heavily hampered by traffic delays and landslides blocking roads.

At least 589 people had been confirmed killed as of Wednesday morning, China’s ministry of civil affairs said on its website, marking a sharp increase in the death toll.

The ministry added that 2,401 people were injured and 230,000 had been evacuated, while more than 80,000 homes had fully or partially collapsed.

One of the main roads is seen blocked at the quake zone in Ludian county, Zhaotong, Yunnan province, August 5, 2014. The death toll from an earthquake that devastated a remote region of China jumped to nearly 600 people on Wednesday, authorities said, as volunteer rescuers were warned away. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
 
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