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Death toll rises in Tibet earthquake
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Ten people are confirmed dead and 34 injured after a 6.6-magnitude earthquake jolted parts of Tibet Autonomous Region in southwest China, the regional government said Tuesday.

Tibet earthquake

A woman with her child walks past the collapsed building in Gedar Village of Yangbajain Township, Damxung County in southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, Oct. 6, 2008. [Xinhua] 

The latest death was from a high school in Shannan Prefecture, the region's vice chairman Gong Puguang said at a press conference.

Gong said the school in Nagarze County was evacuating its students during the quake when a stampede occurred. One teenager was killed and 15 others injured.

The earthquake hit Damxung, an outer county of the regional capital Lhasa, 4:30 p.m. Monday.

Nine deaths and 19 injuries were reported in the epicenter, mainly women, children and the elderly. Most men were out mowing and storing forage grass for the winter.

The previous "at least 30" death toll was inaccurate due to unauthoritative sources and needs further check.

Rescuers arrived at Yangyi Village, the worst-hit site in Gedar Township of Damxung County, late Monday night after repairing the road once paralyzed in the 6.6-magnitude tremor.

At least 147 houses in Yangyi and villages in a neighboring county collapsed. Rescuers recovered nine bodies from the debris, and 11 people were seriously injured while eight others received light injuries, Hao Peng, deputy chairman of the autonomous regional government and head of the rescue command, told Xinhua.

Tibet earthquake

The collapsed building is seen in Gedar Village of Yangbajain Township, Damxung County in southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, Oct. 6, 2008. At least 30 people were killed in the earthquake measuring 6.6 on the Richter scale that jolted Damxung County in Lhasa at 4:30 p.m. Monday, local government said. The victims were found in Gedar township of Damxung County, the epicenter. More people were still buried in debris and many houses collapsed, said the Tibet Autonomous Region Government. [Xinhua] 

More than 600 soldiers, police officers, firefighters, traffic, medical and geological experts were rushing to the quake zone.

Food, drinking water, tents and other materials had been transported to the area. Rescue operation was underway. The injured were being sent to local hospitals.

Tremors were felt in Lhasa, but no major damages were found in buildings or historical sites there, including the famed Potala Palace and the Jokhang Temple.

"We examined every palace and building right after the quake and no damages were found," said Jamba Gesang, head of the management department of the Potala Palace.

The Jokhang Temple kept hosting visitors as all constructions were unaffected in the tremor.

Key cultural relics also stayed intact, as the sites were far from the epicenter, said Yu Dawa, chief of the cultural heritage bureau of Tibet.

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