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"Canada can, within a positive friendly atmosphere, ask the Chinese government to resolve the Tibetan situation."

Tibet mudslide death toll rises to 702, Tibetan exiles offer prayers

August 11, 2010

By Phurbu Thinley
Phayul
August 10, 2010

Latest: Death toll from landslides in Tibet's
Amdo Province has more than doubled Tuesday to
702, with 1,042 others still missing, Chinese state media said late Tuesday.

Some 1,243 people have been rescued and 42 of
them were found seriously injured, Xinhua said,
quoting Tian Baozhong, head of the Chinese provincial civil affairs department.

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Dharamsala, August 10: Tibet's government in
exile Tuesday organised a mass prayer service for
the victims and survivors of devastating
mudslides that struck Drugchu County (Ch: Zhuoqu
County) in Tibet's Amdo province early Sunday.

The latest death toll has surged to 337, as
rescuers continued desperate search for more than
1,000 others still missing, Chinese state-run news agency Xinhua said Tuesday.

Hundreds of Tibetans gathered at the main Tibetan
temple (Tsuglagkhang) here to offer special
prayers for thousands of people affected by floods and mudslides in the region.

The hour-long prayer service, led by monks of
Namgyal Monastery, was organised by the Kashag
and the Department of Religion and Culture of the
Central Tibetan Administration and was attended
by entire staff of the administration.

The death toll jumped to 337 late Monday from an
earlier figure of 137, Xinhua said, quoting Chen
Jianhua, communist party chief of Gannan 'TAP'.

Another 1,148 are still missing, the report said.

According to the report, at least 30 percent of
the local population are Tibetan. Many people
have half Tibetan, half Chinese names, as a
result of intermarriages between the two ethnic groups, Xinhua said.

Chinese media called it a rain-triggered
mudslides, but a collaborative investigation by a
Beijing-based Tibetan writer Woeser suggested
that the landslide appeared to be a man-made disaster.

The findings said excessive mining activities,
construction of number of hydroelectric power
plants and other development activities, and
heavy deforestation taking place in Drugchu
County area could have triggered the mudslides.

The investigation, citing Chinese government
reports, found more than 60 incidents of
landslides in Drugchu County alone in the past,
and 13 of them were said to be serious cases that
threatened the safety of local residents.
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