Twenty Chinese students are reportedly buried in the rubble of the collapsed Canterbury TV building in Christchurch after a 6.3 magnitude earthquake hit the New Zealand city on Tuesday. Chinese ambassador Xu Jianguo met with Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker on Wednesday and urged New Zealand to make unswerving efforts in rescuing the Chinese students. Chen Guang has the details.
The CTV building houses a private language school on the 2nd and 3rd floors.
Around eighty international students are enrolled there – 32 of them are Chinese.
When the earthquake struck, the students were in class. Many have not answered calls or replied to text messages.
Police believe some may have been taken to hospital, but names haven’t yet been released.
Two of the students have been identified. One is Lai Chang from south China’s Guangdong Province, a student of King’s Education.
The other is a woman surnamed Li. She comes from Taiwan.
New Zealand rescuers at one stage abandoned hope of finding survivors in the six-story building.
However, under pressure from China’s embassy in New Zealand, rescue efforts resumed later to look for survivors.
The embassy says it has not received any formal reports on the death of Chinese nationals.
Meanwhile, rescuers are still searching the collapsed building.
New Zealand police confirmed on Thursday that at least 98 people are now known to have died in Tuesday’s devastating earthquake in Christchurch while 226 people remain missing.