Aftershocks hamper rescue efforts in Taiwan

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Taipei, Feb 8 (IANS) A series of strong aftershocks have hindered search and rescue efforts on Thursday for victims and survivors of a magnitude-6.4 earthquake in Taiwan that left nine people dead and 226 others injured.

The earthquake struck the eastern city of Hualien on Tuesday night, reports Efe news.

Sixty-two people remain missing, likely trapped under the rubble of the residential-commercial Yunmen Cuidi building, which was tilting at an angle of almost 45 degrees, and the Meliun Hotel.

In the early hours of Thursday, local authorities issued an alarm for an aftershock which the US Geological Survey recorded as a 5.7-magnitude tremor.

Taiwan’s Seismological Observation Centre has recorded about 200 aftershocks since Tuesday’s quake.

Taiwan is located within the so-called “Pacific Ring of Fire”, an area known for its intense seismic activity.

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The country suffered a strong 7.6-magnitude tremor in 1999, which killed at least 2,415 people.

–IANS

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