Section of iconic landmark, the Great Wall of China collapses
Officials attributed damage to earthquake.
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A section of the Great Wall of China dating back to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) collapsed after a 6.9 magnitude earthquake hit Northwest China's Qinghai Province on Saturday midnight at a depth of 10 kilometers.
After the earthquake, two meters of the old fortification collapsed in Shandan County, Gansu Province, 114 kilometers from the recorded epicenter in Menyuan County, in the Haibei Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai.
After the strong seism, authorities organized an inspection of local cultural relics and discovered the collapse site. A primary protection has been installed and the repair and restoration work is in process.
The quake struck an area that was sparsely populated but multiple bigger cities felt the tremor. There were no reports of deaths but nine people were injured, among whom eight were discharged from the hospital and one is still under observation.
Shi Yucheng, chief of the Gansu Earthquake Agency, told media that the closest residential area is 40 kilometers away from the epicenter, which is on an earthquake belt and locals are used to dealing with tremors.
In the local battle against poverty, the houses of residents were upgraded or refurbished to be quake-proof, which also contributed to reducing casualties in an earthquake of such magnitude, Shi said.
On April 14, 2010, a 7.1-magnitude earthquake hit Yushu Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai, leaving 2,698 dead and 270 missing. More than 90 percent of local houses collapsed in the earthquake and several strong aftershocks.
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