Relief efforts in quake-hit Xinjiang ongoing

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BEIJING, July 2 (Xinhua) -- China's Ministry of Civil Affairs will continue to send officials and experts to conduct relief work in northwest China's quake-hit Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, according to a statement made by the ministry Sunday night.

According to local authorities, more than 155,000 people have been affected and 48,000 have been relocated since a 6.6-magnitude quake jolted a mountainous area along the border of Hejing and Xinyuan counties in Xinjiang early Saturday morning. The quake was followed by several 3- to 4-magnitude aftershocks.

The earthquake destroyed 7,500 houses and severely damaged 21,000 others, the ministry said.

Local governments have allocated 8 million yuan (1.26 million U.S. dollars) for disaster-hit areas, and they have sent 2,400 tents, 2,500 quilts and other relief materials such as rice and edible oil to affected areas, the ministry said.

The quake-hit region, located about 3,500 meters above sea level, has been geologically active throughout history. Two earthquakes measuring higher than 7 on the Richter scale have jolted the region since 1900.

Editor: Mo Hong'e