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Feb 7, 2018

Belizeans Safe as Taiwan Reels from Strong Late-Night Earthquake

A six-point-four magnitude earthquake struck on the coast of Taiwan very late on Tuesday night, about ten minutes before midnight local time. Centered on the eastern city of Hualien, about a hundred miles south of the capital Taipei, seven deaths have so far been reported and more than two hundred persons left injured. There are another sixty-seven persons unaccounted for. It comes almost a month after our own tsunami scare following a seven-point-five magnitude earthquake in the Swan Islands of Honduras. There is an active Belizean population in the Republic as students and workers, and for those Belizean families worried tonight, the Belize Taiwanese embassy reports that so far there are no Belizeans injured or unaccounted for. This afternoon, the embassy’s deputy counselor Bi-Yin Chien told News Five that Taiwan thanks its Belizean friends for their support so far and asked to keep the country in your thoughts as they count the cost of Tuesday’s temblor.

 

Bi-Yin Chien

Bi-Yin Chien, Deputy Counselor, Belize Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan)

“Following the earthquake, our central emergency operation center was activated immediately, early on February seventh. And our president, Tsai Ing-wen, and premier, Lai Ching-te, (William) instructed all government agencies to fully support the rescue efforts and exhaust all possibilities in searching for survivors. And also the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Taiwan dispatched staff immediately to Hualien, to the center of disaster response, to support the rescue effort and also assist with the matter pertaining to the foreign nationals affected by this earthquake. As the Embassy has [been told], there are no Belizean students injured or hurt during this earthquake till now. And our Embassy will keep monitoring the developing situation and we’ll keep you informed.  The Government of Taiwan expresses appreciation to the government and friends from Belize for having conveyed concern and condolences in this matter.”

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