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Moderate aftershock hits NW China's Xinjiang
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An aftershock of 5.0 on the Richter scale hit a county in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in China's remote northwest on Wednesday evening, but no casualties have been reported.

The quake jolted Yutian County, Hotan Prefecture, at 6:39 p.m., according to the monitoring of China Earthquake Networks Center.

The area had undergone eight tremors above 5.0 magnitude and more than 1,500 aftershocks above 2.0 magnitude since the first and strongest quake measuring 7.3 on the Richter scale hit Yutian at 6:33 a.m Friday.

The accident affected 97,603 people and damaged 2,283 houses in counties of Yutian, Qira and Lop in Hotan Prefecture, causing a direct economic loss of 114 million yuan (16 million US dollars), according to the regional Department of Civil Affairs.

In 2004, the Hotan government launched a project to build quake-resistant houses in the quake-prone Kunlun Mountain region. More than 1.2 million people in 257,000 households had moved to new quake-resistant buildings by September last year.

(Xinhua News Agency March 27, 2008)

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