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Students from quake-hit Sichuan to visit Japan
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Eighty-six teenagers from quake-hit Sichuan Province in southwest China left home Thursday on their way to Japan for a holiday at the invitation of the Japanese government.

The high school students, accompanied by 11 teachers and doctors, will fly to Japan Saturday from Beijing. They were scheduled to stay for seven days, said Yu Jun, leader of the group.

Liu Bo, a student at Beichuan Middle School which lost more than 1,000 children in the earthquake on May 12 last year, said he was looking forward to the trip and had surfed the Internet to learn about Japan.

"It is a great opportunity. We want to broaden our vision and learn about the lives of Japanese students," Liu said.

The 8-magnitude earthquake devastated Sichuan and the neighboring provinces of Shaanxi and Gansu, leaving about 87,000 people dead or missing and more than 370,000 injured.

(Xinhua News Agency August 20, 2009)

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