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Strong quake jolts China's Sichuan, killing 160

5:23 PM, Apr 20, 2013   |    comments
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YA'AN, China - Residents are huddling outdoors in a town near the epicenter of a powerful earthquake that struck the steep hills of China's southwestern Sichuan province, leaving at least 160 people dead and more than 6,700 injured.

Saturday morning's earthquake triggered landslides and disrupted phone and power connections in Lushan county five years after a devastating quake wreaked widespread damage across the region.

Lushan is home to 1.5 million people. Known for its mountains, the area is near a well-known preserve for pandas.

The village of Longmen was hit particularly hard, with authorities saying nearly all the buildings there had been destroyed in a frightening minute-long shaking by the quake.

In nearby Ya'an town, where aftershocks could be felt nearly 20 hours after the quake, residents sat in groups outside convenience stores watching the news on television sets.

The China Earthquake Administration puts the magnitude of the quake at 7.0, while the U.S. Geological Survey puts it at the 6.6.

The Associated Press

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