The need assessment team of the Red Cross Society of China (RCSC) reported that the earthquake measuring 6.8 on the Richter scale which struck the northwestern region of Xinjiang, China on 24 February 2003 at 10.03 a.m. local time, killed 266 people and caused some 2,060 injured and 8,861 families homeless.
A relief worker of the Xinjiang Red Cross who has arrived at the worst-hit area, Qugkuqak Township of Bechu County, said, "An emergency center was set up at the township clinic to handle the wounded people. Some cases were transferred to the county hospital. Since most of the buildings collapsed or were seriously damaged during the earthquakes, many victims have to live without shelter."
The Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region Red Cross Branch's Relief Team has arrived at the worst-hit area, Bechu County, today to conduct the need assessment. Another team comprising staff from the RCSC headquarters and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies will soon join the work. In the meantime, the Xinjiang Red Cross has already sent to the affected area 1,000 quilts of RMB 70,000 worth, which will reach the victims tomorrow afternoon. The RCSC headquarters also released RMB 250,000 to assist the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region Red Cross Branch to respond to the emergency needs of the earthquake victims.
For media enquiry, please contact Miss Bonnie So, Head of International & Relief Service, at 2507-7130.