Quake in China’s Sichuan kills 19, injures 247

A 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck a remote, mountainous part of China’s southwestern province of Sichuan Wednesday, killing 19 people and injuring 247, the provincial government and official media said.

At least six tourists were among those killed, the official China News Service said.

The quake hit a sparsely populated area 200 km northwest of the city of Guangyuan late on Tuesday at a depth of 10 km, the US Geological Survey said. It was also close to the Jiuzhaigou nature reserve, a tourist destination.

Sichuan is frequently struck by tremors. A huge quake there in May 2008 killed almost 70,000 people.

A separate quake of magnitude 6.6 hit a remote part of China’s far northwestern region of Xinjiang, more than 2,000 km away, on Wednesday, the Chinese earthquake administration said. The People’s Daily said 32 people had been injured in the mostly rural area.

The Sichuan government said rescuers were gradually evacuating tourists and residents who had been cut off by landslides.

The nearby Longnan in the neighboring province of Gansu was also jolted by the quake, and eight people died in landslides caused by heavy rain, the People’s Daily said.

State television said electricity had largely been restored to affected areas and the military was also sending rescuers.

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