On Wednesday 14 April, an earthquake measuring 7.1 on the Richter scale occurred in the Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Yushu in Qinghai province, some 800 km southwest of Xining, the Capital of Qinghai province. at 19 April there were aprroximately 2,000 people confirmed dead, and more that 12,00 injured. Some 100,000 people have been evacuated from their homes. Food stocks and infrastructure for transporting food to markets are also badly damaged.
The Ministry of Civil Affairs reports that 100,000 people have been evacuated. Many of them are being housed in temporary camps. The affected area stands at 4,000 meters above sealevel and termperatures are still sub-zero, especially overnight.
the counties of Yushu Prefecture are among the counties identified by the government as the poorest in the country. They were ranked as having the worst food security status in China in a recent food security study by WFP. IFAD and FAO.
The Government has already dispatched more than 1,000 tons of food assistance, but has called for more from within CHina, and from international aid. UNICEF's government counterparts have requested food items suitable for mothers and young children, to be distributed with their micronutrient supplements.
The government, Red Cross and other approved NGOs are assisting those living in temporary accommodation. WHO has sent medicine to counter the effects of high altitudes for rescue workers and is procuring medical supplies. UNICEF is sending shcool tents, warm clothes and blankets as temperatures in the area which is 4,000 above sea level are below freezing; INFPA is preparing reproductive health and hygiene kits. INDP is preparing a cash for work project.