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Taiwan quake death toll reaches 34

Rescuers digging through rubble for survivors more than 48 hours after it struck

Baku. 8 February. REPORT.AZ/ The death toll from a powerful earthquake that toppled a high-rise building in Taiwan rose to at least 34, with rescuers digging through rubble for survivors more than 48 hours after it struck.

Report informs referring to the Taiwan Central News Agency (CNA) over 100 people are believed to be still buried in the collapsed building from a disaster that happened during the most important family holiday in the Chinese calendar - the Lunar New Year.

The government in Tainan, the worst-hit city, said more than 170 people had been rescued alive from the 17-storey building, which folded like an accordion after the earthquake struck.

The extended Lunar New Year holiday officially started on Monday, but celebrations were subdued and both President Ma Ying-jeou and President-elect Tsai Ing-wen cancelled the handing out of envelopes of cash in their home towns, a holiday tradition for Taiwan's leader.

The Tainan Disaster Emergency Centre estimated that 118 people were still trapped at the site of the collapsed building, many at the bottom of the debris.

Tainan mayor Lai Ching-te said rescuers were able to reach many people by using information from residents who got out about the possible locations of those still inside.

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