Premier heads for quake-hit zone in Sichuan

Updated: 2013-04-20 13:36


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Premier heads for quake-hit zone in Sichuan

Premier Li Keqiang, right, takes a flight to Ya'an at 13:15 to oversee the rescue operation which he has discussed with specialists. [Photo by People's Daily via Sina weibo]

BEIJING - Chinese Premier Li Keqiang is heading for Ya'an City in southwest China's Sichuan Province which was struck by a 7.0-magnitude earthquake Saturday morning.

"The current most urgent issue is grasping the first 24 hours since the quake's occurrence, the golden time for saving lives, to take scientific rescue measures and save peoples' lives," Li said.

Fifty-six people have so far been confirmed to have died, according to latest figures provided by the provincial earthquake relief headquarters.

The earthquake hit Lushan County of Ya'an City in Sichuan Province at 8:02 am Beijing Time.