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Japan Provides China with Satellite Images on Quake-jolted Areas

Chinese specialists are analyzing images from a Japanese satellite of the areas jolted by Monday's deadly earthquake, China National Space Administration said on Wednesday.

They are the first large-scale images from space of the quake that has so far claimed at least 12,000 lives.

The images were provided by Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency as part of the International Charter "Space and Major Disasters".

Other members of the International Charter "Space and Major Disasters", including the United States, France and Canada, are also expected to provide China with satellite images of the quake-hit areas.

China joined the International Charter "Space and Major Disasters" in May 2007. It is a disaster relief cooperation mechanism initiated jointly by Europe Space Agency and Canadian Space Agency.

In a related development, the International Maritime Satellite Organization, or Inmarsat, has increased telecom bands by 200 percent for the quake-hit areas in China, which will enhance the telecom capacity there substantially.

Maritime satellite telephony is the world's only secure telecom means providing global, all-weather and all-dimensional mobile telecom services.

In another development, a Russian plane carrying 24.42 tonnes of disaster relief materials, including tents and quilts, arrived in Chengdu, capital city of the quake-hit Sichuan Province, Wednesday afternoon. This is the first from the international community for the disaster-haunted areas, and will be sent there by airdrop.

(Xinhua News Agency May 14, 2008)

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