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Quake Relief Headquarters: Focus of Relief Work to Shift to Reconstruction

Earthquake relief work has entered a "new stage" and more efforts should be focused on resettlement and post-quake reconstruction in damaged areas, the earthquake relief headquarters under China's State Council agreed at a meeting on Tuesday.

The meeting was presided over by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, also head of the quake relief headquarters.

Efforts to search for survivors should continue, but more importance should be attached to the resettlement of quake-affected people, restoration of production and reconstruction, the meeting said.

It called for more epidemic experts to be sent to all villages in the quake zones for disease prevention. Inoculation on people vulnerable to infectious diseases in the quake zones should be carried out as soon as possible.

Local authorities must handle well the aftermath of the quake dead and take good care of those affected in the quake, the meeting said, urging sufficient supplies of makeshift accommodation for the affected, especially those in remote mountainous areas.

It urged quake relief forces to address the threat posed by the swelling earthquake-induced Tangjiashan Lake to downstream regions, citing it as one of the "most pressing jobs at hand".

Other quake-induced disasters and aftershocks should be carefully guarded against, the meeting said.

It urged that social order should be maintained in the quake zones, with restoration of production and post-quake reconstruction to be planned in the meantime.

(Xinhua News Agency May 28, 2008)

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