Recovery Efforts Begin After Pohang Earthquake


South Korean government has convened an emergency meeting chaired by Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon on the 5.4 magnitude quake that struck Pohang city yesterday.

Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon said, the government will provide about 4 billion won (US$3.6 million) in special grants Thursday for recovery efforts in the southeastern city of Pohang struck by the second-most-powerful earthquake on record to hit the country.

Lee made the remark during a visit to the situation room in Pohang overseeing recovery efforts, adding that the government will also take steps to designate the city as a disaster zone entitled to greater state subsidies and support as damage from the quake has been snowballing.

Lee later visited the affected sites, such as a girls’ high school and an apartment complex, to take a first-hand look at the damage. He also paid a visit to an indoor stadium being used as a shelter for displaced citizens.

The 5.4 magnitude earthquake left more than 1,000 buildings, homes and vehicles destroyed or damaged, at least 57 people injured and a total of 1,536 people displaced from their homes. It also forced a postponement of the annual college entrance exam, which had been scheduled for Thursday.

It was the second-strongest quake on record to hit South Korea after last year’s magnitude 5.8 earthquake in the nearby city of Gyeongju. But actual damage was much greater in this week’s quake than in last year’s.

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