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China mudslides kill at least 16: Xinhua

01 august 2012, 12:44
0
Rescuers and excavators look for missing victims after a landslide. © REUTERS/CDIC
Rescuers and excavators look for missing victims after a landslide. © REUTERS/CDIC
Mudslides that buried an iron ore mine in northwestern China have killed at least 16 people, with another 12 still missing a day after the disaster, AFP reports citing state media.

Most of the victims of the accident in the remote region of Xinjiang were mine workers but the bodies of six residents, including three women and a child, were also pulled out from under the wreckage.

The official Xinhua news agency said there was only a slim chance of finding any survivors, quoting a local emergency official.

Tuesday's accident occurred at a time when several parts of the country have faced major rainstorms, including the heaviest downpour in Beijing in 60 years that left 77 people dead on July 21.

Rain is forecast to continue in Ili prefecture, where the accident took place, hampering rescue efforts, a Xinjiang news website said on Wednesday.

Xinjiang is home to about nine million Uighurs, a Turkic-speaking and mainly Muslim ethnic minority. Many Uighurs accuse China of religious and political persecution, while the government denies claims of repression.

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