Two earthquakes shake China in the past 24 hours

Beijing: Thirteen people including six tourists were killed and 175 injured when a 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck Sichuan in China’s southwest, the provincial government and official media said on Wednesday.

Of those hurt, about 28 had been severely injured, a state-owned media outlet Xinhua said.

More than 600 fire officers and soldiers have been deployed, the People’s Daily newspaper said. Rescuers are still working to clear the rubble, and there are people buried beneath the debris, state broadcaster CCTV said.

The quake occurred about 9.20pm (1320 GMT) on Tuesday, not far from the site of a massive magnitude 8.0 earthquake that struck in 2008 leaving 87,000 people dead or missing. China is regularly hit by earthquakes, especially its mountainous western and south western regions.

Its epicentre was 284 kilometres (176 miles) north of the provincial capital Chengdu and struck at a depth of 10 kilometres, the US Geological Survey said.

The affected region, Jiuzhaigou county, includes one of the country’s most famous national parks, a Unesco World Heritage Site known for karst formations and lakes. Local authorities announced the closure of the Jiuzhaigou tourist area.

The state-run Xinhua news agency said that as many as 31,500 tourists had been evacuated from the quake zone.

This wasn’t the only quake in China in the past 24 hours.

On Wednesday morning, a magnitude-6.3 earthquake struck northwestern China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, close to the border to Kazakhstan, the United States Geological Survey said.

The quake struck at 7:27 a.m. local time. Its epicenter was 107 kilometers (67 miles) south-southeast of Dostq, Kazakhstan, at a depth of 25.9 kilometers (16 miles), the USGS said.

However due to the sparsely populated nature of the area there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage.

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