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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Japan disaster: over 25,000 dead or missing

Via NHK News :

" More than 25,000 people are officially dead or missing after the earthquake and tsunami that struck northeastern Japan on March 11th.According to the National Police Agency, 9,523 people are confirmed dead as of 11 PM on Wednesday.

The agency says it has received reports of 16,094 people missing.Most of the dead and missing are from the 3 hardest hit prefectures of Miyagi, Iwate and Fukushima.The number of confirmed deaths in Fukushima totals 776, far smaller than the more than 57,000 in Miyagi and the nearly 3,000 in Iwate.

This may be due to the suspension of search operations in areas within 20 kilometers of the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, because of radiation leaks.Figures appear almost certain to rise because of the absence of family members to report the dead and missing. In some areas, entire families appear to have perished in the tsunami that followed the magnitude 9.0 quake.

Emergency shelters are accommodating more than 200,000 people, mostly from the prefectures of Miyagi, Iwate and Fukushima, according to NHK figures. More than 30,000 people, mainly from Fukushima, have fled their hometowns to other prefectures.

Some survivors who have returned to their homes in areas where essential services have been restored are suffering from shortages of supplies, and are having to seek food at shelters for local residents.The National Police Agency says at least 18,000 houses were destroyed by the quake and tsunami, and more than 130,000 homes were damaged."

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