01/01/2005, 00.00

Tsunami toll feared at 150,000

Rome (AsiaNews) - At least 123,171 people are reported dead around southern Asia and as far away as Somalia on Africa's eastern coast killed by massive tsunamis, but the U.N. emergency relief operations coordinator said the death toll was approaching 150,000.

"The true figure will probably never be known because people are burying the corpses where they find them," said Anjali Kwatra, leader of Sri Lanka's Christian Aid emergency team.

At least 6,000 Europeans are still missing - most of them presumed dead - after the disaster wrecked beach resorts in south-west Thailand.

Tonight an earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 5 shook south-eastern Sumatra on Saturday, sending residents in two cities running in panic from their houses. It was centered beneath the Indian Ocean about 60 kilometers (40 miles) south of the province's capital of Bengkulu. There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties. Northwestern Sumatra was the hardest hit area in Sunday's earthquake and tsunami disaster.

Here is the latest death toll per country:

Indonesia: 80,246.

Sri Lanka: 28,729.

India: 8,942.

Thailand: 4,812

Myanmar: 90.

Maldives: 73.

Malaysia: 66.

Bangladesh: 2

Somalia: 200.

Tanzania: 10

Kenya: 1.

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See also
A battered continent: An Overview
More than 13 thousand dead after quakes, tsunami smashed southern Asia
Toll close to 100,000, 5 million displaced
Tsunami death toll now in 170,000-182,000 range
Death toll in Asian disaster passes 26,000