Rescue Efforts Underway as China Earthquake Toll Rises

Photo: AP [via CBS News]

The Facts

  • A magnitude 6.8 earthquake hit China's southwestern Sichuan province on Mon., leaving at least 66 people dead. The quake was felt 125 miles away from the province's capital, Chengdu, where many of the city's 21M residents are locked down under stringent COVID protocols.

  • China's president, Xi Jinping, ordered full government resources to support rescue efforts. The quake also damaged communications in remote, isolated areas.

The Spin

Anti-China narrative

Despite the swift actions of first responders, it's highly concerning that residents of Chengdu were prevented from going outside during the earthquake because of draconian COVID lockdowns. These measures ultimately posed a risk to safety in this disaster when time was of the essence.

Pro-China narrative

China is extraordinarily effective in mounting a coordinated response, including for this emergency. Whether it's COVID, floods, fires, or earthquakes, the PRC maintains robust disaster response capabilities. Residents have been told to make safe evacuations and with appropriate COVID protections in the event of aftershocks or other events.

Establishment split



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