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Relief supplies delivered to worst-hit areas
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It has been more than a month since the quake struck Sichuan in southwest China. Many survivors are now able to look after their own needs. But others, especially those in mountainous regions, are still largely relying on government and army forces for relief supplies and other assistance.

On Sunday afternoon, soldiers were busy uploading relief supplies and their own luggage.

CCTV's Zheng Junfeng and Zhang Yingnan have been following an army delivery convoy travelling between the worst-hit towns in the mountains of Sichuan province.

On Sunday afternoon, soldiers were busy uploading relief supplies and their own luggage. They knew it would be a long journey. The first delivery trip took four days. This second one will be no different.

An army commander said the convoy will travel to 12 settlements set up by his division in the worst-hit areas. His men have been helping thousands of survivors in remote mountainous areas to try and rebuild their lives. They are now running out of basic necessities. But the logistics officer says they can only deliver supplies to the front line once every few weeks as the mountain route is unsafe.

Qin Dashun, division logistics officer of Chengdu Military Area Command, said, "Our orders are that our top priority must be our own safety. It's been raining for the past several days and we're waiting for it to stop before we set off. Our supplies for the soldiers and local residents can last for another 20 days."

On Monday morning, the skies were clear. So the convoy of seven trucks and several other vehicles finally got on its way after a delay of two days.

By noon the convoy had reached the first settlement near An County. And soldiers working there were thrilled to get the clean water their comrades had brought.

The convoy continued into the mountains. All the drivers were constantly alert about road conditions especially looking out for landslides.

Early on Monday afternoon, the convoy had to stop because of an earlier landslide. We had to wait for almost an hour before we could pass. This engineer said they had been working for five days clearing all the landslides on the major road from An County to Mao County. They have almost completed their task.

But we encountered yet another landslide which fortunately did not block the road. It was decided that vehicles could pass through one after another with a short delay in between, so that if there were a further landslide it would only hit one of the vehicles. Luckily, we all got through safely.

The convoy reached another settlement in the mountains later in the afternoon. Soldiers distributed the supplies to local residents, who appeared well organized. Perhaps the survivors' only way of expressing their appreciation was to help the soldiers with the distribution as efficiently as possible.

(CCTV.com June 18, 2008)

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