MANILA - No Filipinos were hurt in the 7.0-magnitude earthquake that hit the Sichuan province in China on Wednesday, the Department of Foreign Affairs said.
Citing a report from the Philippine Consulate General in Chongqing, the DFA said the mission continues to coordinate with the Filipino community in the area to ensure their safety.
"The Consulate General continues to closely coordinate with the Filipino community to ensure that Filipinos in the area are safe and that those who may have been affected by the earthquake could be provided needed consular assistance," the foreign office said.
The DFA said Filipinos in Sichuan may contact the Consulate General in Chongqing through the assistance to nationals hotline at +(86) 15823972513.
The quake hit a sparsely populated area 200 km northwest of the city of Guangyuan late Tuesday at a depth of 10 km, the US Geological Survey said. It was also close to the Jiuzhaigou nature reserve, a tourist destination.
Latest reports revealed that the quake left at least 19 people dead, including 8 tourists, and injured 247, the provincial government and official media said on Wednesday.
Sichuan is frequently struck by tremors. A huge quake there in May 2008 killed almost 70,000 people.
A separate quake of magnitude 6.6 hit a remote part of China's far northwestern region of Xinjiang, more than 2,000 km away, on Wednesday, the Chinese earthquake administration said.
The People's Daily said 32 people had been injured in the mostly rural area. --with a report from Reuters