China: earthquake leaves thousands homeless in Yunnan
Beijing (AsiaNews/Agencies) – At 5.35 this morning an earthquake registering 5.3 on the Richter scale hit South West China in the province of Yunnan, not far from the Myanmar border. So far there are no reports of dead or injured, but countless houses have been destroyed and over 1200 people have been forced to leave their homes. Authorities are coordinating relief operations in the area, to verify if there are people missing or buried under the rubble.
The city of Sudian, 50 km from the county capital Yingjiang, was the epicentre of the quake; Yunnan lies just north of Sichuan, where May 12th last an earthquake left 70 thousand people dead. Early August another tremor hit Gansu and Sichuan provinces, killing one person and injuring 23 others.
Government authorities have set up a task force to supervise reconstruction in Sichuan counties, including the building of houses for the millions who lost their homes as well as economic development programmes to guarantee employment to local citizens, who have been further impoverished by the disastrous consequences of last May’s quake.