Canada ready to assist quake-hit SW China

Updated: 2012-09-08 13:24


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OTTAWA - Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said on Friday that Canada is ready to provide assistance to those affected by the earthquakes in southwest China.

Baird said in a statement that although China has significant experience with natural disasters and proven capacity in responding to them, Canada stands ready to provide assistance if requested.

"Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with those affected by the earthquakes," he said.

Baird said that through its embassy in Beijing and consulate in Chongqing, the Canadian government is in close contact with local authorities to determine the impact of the earthquakes.

"Canadian diplomatic offices in the region are ready to provide consular assistance to Canadians as required," he added.

Two quakes measuring 5.7 and 5.6 on the Richter scale hit a border area near Yiliang in Yunnan Province and Weining county in Guizhou Province around Friday noon.

Eighty people have been killed in the earthquakes and the death toll may further climb, authorities said Saturday.