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Mudslide evacuees to be relocated in northwest China

ZHOUQU, Gansu, Aug. 19 (Xinhua)-- More than 1,700 mudslide evacuees presently residing at schools in Zhouqu county of northwest China's Gansu Province are to be relocated as students will start the new semester soon, local authorities said Thursday.

More than 400 households, altogether over 1,700 people, will be moved to Shachuan Village, in western of the mudslides-leveled county, said Yang Jianguo, head of the Civil Affairs Bureau of Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture which administers Zhouqu.

The people are now living in dormitories and classrooms of three local schools, namely No.1 High School, No.1 Junior High and No. 3 Junior High. With students coming back from their summer vacation, the schools could no longer be used as settlement areas.

More than one thousand tents will be erected at the new settlement zone covering an area of 67 mu (4.5 hectares), with three tents for each family, said Yang.

"They probably will have to spend the winter there so winter tents will be used," said Yang.

The devastating mudslides which hit on Aug. 8 have claimed 1,364 lives with 401 people still missing as of 4 p.m. Thursday.

Work crews will level the ground, ensure water and electricity supply and build lavatories from Aug. 21 to 23. They will start setting up tents on Aug. 24, said Yang.

The new semester for junior school students and pupils will begin on Aug. 25 and senior high students will be transferred to other cities in the province, and start the new semester in early September.

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