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News releases | 2013

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UNICEF mobilizing to help children affected by Ya’an earthquake


Beijing, 21 April 2013- The death toll from the severe earthquake that struck southwestern Sichuan province early yesterday reached 180 by press time. Thousands of injuries have been reported. According to authorities, the tremor, which measured close to 7 on the richter scale, caused almost all buildings in the quake's epicenter - Longmen Township of Lushan County - to collapse.

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) China Office is closely monitoring the disaster's impact on children living in the hardest hit areas. According to local media reports 10 children are among those killed.

On the day of the major quake Ministry of Civil Affairs and Sichuan Provincial Government mobilized swift and comprehensive support including shelter materials, food and water rations.

"We are very concerned about the physical and emotional condition of children living near the epicenter of the earthquake due to the reports that such a high percentage of buildings have collapsed," said Gillian Mellsop, UNICEF China Representative. "We are standing by, ready to respond in whatever manner necessary."

UNICEF is in contact with its local partners to assess the effect of the severe tremor on children. In cooperation with the National Working Committee on Children and Women, UNICEF supports a network of more than 40 "Child Friendly Spaces" in Sichuan. Some of these Child Friendly Spaces are located close to the affected area.


For further information, please contact:

Indra Kumari Nadchatram,
UNICEF Media, Malaysia
(+6.03) 2095 9157
+6012 292 6872

Sasha Surandran,
UNICEF Media, Malaysia
(+6.03) 2095 9154 ext. 2236
+6012 658 5160





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