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More Than 60,000 Affected in Tibet Quake

An earthquake followed by some 1,000 aftershocks has affected more than 60,000 people in the Tibet Autonomous Region this week, the local government said in a news conference on Saturday.

Since Monday's 6.6-magnitude quake struck Damxung County in Lhasa, more than 1,000 aftershocks have been monitored, including one that measured 5.4 on the Richter scale, said Gong Puguang, vice president of the regional government.

61,231 people in the region's capital have been affected and 989 houses collapsed, said Gong.

More than 4,800 people have been relocated out of the quake zone.

The quake-hit areas include Lhasa, Xigaze and Shannan regions, where 28 km of road and 11 bridges were damaged.

So far, ten people have been confirmed dead. 54 others sustained injuries, one third of those injuries are serious.

The central government allocated 10 million yuan (US$1.46 million), 11,000 tents, quilts, and other quake relief materials to the affected area.

The items were being distributed as traffic and telecommunication resumed in the area.

The local government is evaluating economic losses from the disaster.

Seismologists predict more aftershocks will hit the county but the force is unlikely to exceed 5.5 on the Richter scale.

(Xinhua News Agency October 12, 2008)

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