Quakes Hit Southwestern China


BEIJING (CNN) -- A series of earthquakes in southwestern China Friday killed at least 64 people and injured 715 more, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

About 20,000 homes were damaged, according to Xinhua.

Premier Wen Jiabao was on his way to the scene, the news agency reported.

The four quakes struck near the border of the provinces of Yunnan and Guizhou between 11:19 a.m. and 1:12 p.m. local time, the U.S. Geological Survey said. Their magnitudes ranged between 4.8 and 5.6, it said.

The first quake took place at the border area of Yiliang County in Yunnan and Weining County in Guizhou, Xinhua said. The news agency cited unidentified government sources for the initial death toll and damage.

All four quakes hit at a depth of about 10 kilometers (six miles), the USGS said.

The southwestern region of China is prone to earthquakes. In May 2008, a magnitude 7.9 quake in Sichuan province caused widespread devastation, killing at least 69,000 people.

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