Chile troops tackle quake looters

March 1, 2010

BBC News

The Chilean military is attempting to restore order in the country’s second city, Concepcion, amid looting after Saturday’s devastating earthquake.

Troops have fired tear gas at looters attempting to flee with food and other goods from wrecked stores.

A dusk-to-dawn curfew is in force in the city, where a major rescue effort is under way.

President Michelle Bachelet has called for international help, and said the death toll of 708 was likely to rise.

In coastal towns and villages hit by giant waves after the 8.8-magnitude quake, the scale of destruction is becoming clear.

AFP news agency quotes state television as saying more than 300 bodies were found in the fishing village of Constitucion alone.

In the port of Talcahuano, more than 20 boats were swept ashore and dumped in the streets by the waves.

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