22 Feb '11, 11pm

Nearly 400 dead or missing in New Zealand quake

Nearly 400 dead or missing in New Zealand quake

CHRISTCHURCH, New Zealand - New Zealand declared a national state of emergency Wednesday after one of its worst earthquake disasters left nearly 400 people dead or missing. Rescuers worked frantically to reach survivors under collapsed buildings in the stricken city centre of Christchurch, after recovering 75 bodies. About 300 people are still missing after Tuesday's 6.3-magnitude quake. "New Zealanders have woken to a tragedy unfolding in the great city of Christchurch," said Prime Minister John Key, declaring the national emergency. "The earthquake that struck the Canterbury region at ten to one yesterday has wreaked death and destruction on a dreadful scale." New Zealand's second city was a scene of "incredible carnage", police said. Rescuers had to amputate limbs from survivors to free them from smouldering ruins of buildings reduced to debris in minutes, while dazed s...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific/vi...

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