Pope: Deeply saddened for the earthquake in Nepal, prayers for the victims and the affected
Kathmandu (AsiaNews) - Pope Francis is "deeply saddened to learn of the earthquake and the resultant loss of many hundreds of lives in Nepal, as well as in neighbouring Countries", Secretary of State cardinal Pietro Parolin wrote to bishop Paul Simick, Apostolic vicar of Nepal. A deadly 7.9 magnitude quake with epicenter at Gorkha district killed 1,341 persons and levelled many historical monuments and buildings across the country on Saturday.
A statement issued by the Home Ministry states that the quake has killed 500 persons in Kathmandu alone while 164 others, mostly women and children, in Bhaktapur and 66 in Lalitpur. The number of casaulties may rise, says Home Ministry.
Multiple number of casaulties have been reported in various districts. Outside the valley, the biggest number of deaths has been reported in Sindhupalchowk district where 80 people lost their lives. Likewise, the tremor has killed 70 in Rasuwa, 57 in Kavre, 40 in Gorkha, 35 in Dhading, 10 in Okhaldhunga, nine in Makwanpur, six in Sunsari and two each in Bhojpur and Solukhumbu.
In the wake of the disaster, government has declared national crisis and established a fund of Rs. 500 million for the reconstruction of the damaged infrastructures.
The Right Reverend Paul Simick
Bishop of the Apostolic Vicariate of Nepal
His Holiness Pope Francis was deeply saddened to learn of the earthquake and the resultant loss of many hundreds of lives in Nepal, as well as in neighbouring Countries. He expresses his solidarity with all affected by this disaster and assures those who grieve for deceased family members of his closeness in prayer. His Holiness commends the souls of the victims to the loving mercy of the Almighty and he offers encouragement to the civil authorities and emergency personnel as they continue their rescue efforts and assistance to those touched by this tragedy. Upon them all he invokes the blessings of the Almighty as a pledge of healing and consolation.
Cardinal Pietro Parolin
Secretary of State