Landslide Buries 18 Students in Southwest China

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 3:30 am (UTC-5)
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Chinese state media say a landslide has buried 18 elementary school students in a southwest region that was already recovering from a devastating earthquake.

The official Xinhua news agency says the landslide destroyed the Youfang Elementary School and two farmhouses in Zhenhe village early Thursday.

Normally, the students would not have been in school, because China is in the middle of a week-long national holiday period. But officials say the students were making up for classes that were canceled following last month's earthquake, that left 81 people dead.

Zhenhe village is located in southwestern Yunnan province, a mountainous, earthquake-prone region. Last month's 5.6-magnitude temblor devastated several villages and left more than 200,000 people displaced.

Xinhua says rescuers are searching the area for survivors of the landslide and local authorities have moved residents to safer ground.