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10/09/05 Worldnews: Pakistan Quake Killed Over 19,000


Rescue workers in Pakistan are struggling to reach areas cut off by Saturday's earthquake in Kashmir, which government officials now say killed more than 19,000 men, women and children. President Pervez Musharraf appealed to the world today (Sunday) to send help -- especially helicopters, medicine, tents and financial aid. General Musharraf, who is now touring the disaster zone, said the United States has already agreed to send helicopters to help reach areas inaccessible by road.

The international community is responding to the urgent call for help for victims of the deadly Kashmir earthquake in South Asia. Japan and Turkey -- two of the world's most earthquake-prone nations -- are sending relief teams (to Pakistan). Tokyo is also sending more than 200,000 dollars worth of blankets, tents and other supplies, along with medical personnel. Australia has pledged nearly 400,000 dollars' worth of medical and relief assistance, while China has dispatched a 49-member rescue team with search dogs and equipment.

A suicide car bomb exploded in southern Iraq today (Sunday) outside an apartment building used by a Shi'ite militia associated with the Iraqi government, killing at least one person and wounding several others. The attack in Basra, Iraq's second city, apparently was aimed at the Iranian-backed Badr Brigade militia. News reports say Basra's former governor Hassan al-Rashid, a senior militia leader, escaped injury. The Badr Brigade is the military wing of (the Supreme Council of Islamic Revolution in Iraq) the largest Shi'ite party in the Iraqi government.

Officials in Afghanistan say a suicide bomb attack in southern Kandahar province today (Sunday) wounded four British nationals. The Britons were hurt when a bomber rammed their vehicle and detonated explosives in his car. The bomber was torn apart by the blast. A local official is quoted (by Reuters) as saying of the Britons are in serious condition. Today's attack comes less than a week after another suicide bomber drove into a Canadian military convoy, killing one Afghan and injuring another.

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