Strong Quake Hits Southwestern China, Killing At Least 12

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HONG KONG (CNN) — A strong earthquake struck the southwestern Chinese province of Sichuan on Saturday, killing at least 12 people and injuring more than 100, local authorities said.

The quake struck just after 8 a.m. local time about 115 kilometers (70 miles) away from the provincial capital, Chengdu, at a depth of around 12 kilometers, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. There was conflicting information about the earthquake’s strength, with the USGS putting the magnitude at 6.6 and the China Earthquake Networks Center gauging it at 7.0.

It was followed by at least seven aftershocks of magnitudes between 4.6 and 5.1, the USGS said.

At least 12 people have been killed as a result of the quake and more than 100 injured, Wang Li, deputy director of the provincial seismology bureau told state broadcaster CCTV.

Photos circulating on social media suggested the quake may have caused considerable damage to buildings.

Authorities have responded by sending rescue workers to the area around the epicenter, shutting down the airport in Chengdu and suspending high-speed rail operations, state media reported.

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