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UN Children's Agency Offers Aid for China Quake Victims

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) offered on Thursday in-kind contributions to support China's national relief effort in earthquake-stricken regions.

"Tents, blankets and school kits have already been procured by UNICEF and will start to arrive in affected areas within the next 48 hours," said UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman in a statement.

"The procurement of health, water and sanitation materials is also underway and these supplies will be dispatched to China as soon as possible," she said.

Veneman said that UNICEF is working closely with the Chinese government and people to assist suffering children in the aftermath of the earthquake that struck Sichuan province on Monday.

She noted that students were "prominent among the victims of the quake, which struck during school hours and resulted in the collapse of a number of school buildings."

"UNICEF stands ready to further assist, as China's national disaster relief efforts continue," she added.

The 7.8 magnitude earthquake, which was the worst to hit China in 30 years, rocked Wenchuan County in China's southwestern Sichuan Province on May 12, and have killed more than 14, 000 people, according to the rescue headquarters.

(Xinhua News Agency May 16, 2008)

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