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Death Toll In Southwest China Landslide Rises To 34

Two hundred rescue workers have been dispatched to the scene, which was covered in thick snow, as well as dozens of fire engines and other equipment.


Rescue personnel search for missing victims following a landslide in Liangshui village at Zhaotong, in southwestern China’s Yunnan province on January 22, 2024. (Photo by AFP)

 

The death toll from a landslide that struck a remote and mountainous part of southwestern China reached 34 on Wednesday, state media said, with ten people still missing.

The pre-dawn landslide buried 18 homes and sparked the evacuation of more than 200 people when it struck in Zhenxiong county, Yunnan province, early Monday.

A report by state broadcaster CCTV on Wednesday afternoon confirmed the toll had risen by three.

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Two hundred rescue workers have been dispatched to the scene, which was covered in thick snow, as well as dozens of fire engines and other equipment.

CCTV said that so far more than 220 tents, 1,350 coats, 700 quilts, 200 sets of beds and bedding and 300 family aid boxes have been handed out.

Since the deadly landslide, images have been broadcast showing rescue workers digging through twisted metal and concrete overnight in a bid to find survivors.

Chinese President Xi Jinping on Monday ordered “all-out” rescue efforts.

Landslides are common in Yunnan, a far-flung and largely impoverished region of China where steep mountain ranges butt against the Himalayan plateau.

Monday’s disaster occurred in a rural area surrounded by towering peaks dusted with snow, state media footage showed.

China has experienced a string of natural disasters in recent months, some following extreme weather events such as sudden, heavy downpours.

Rainstorms last September in the southern region of Guangxi triggered a mountain landslide that killed at least seven people, according to media reports.

In August, heavy rains sparked a similar disaster near the northern city of Xi’an, killing more than 20 people.

AFP