Ecuador earthquake toll rises to nearly 650

The earthquake death toll in Ecuador rose to 646 people on Saturday, with more than 12,500 injured and 130 still unaccounted for, the country's public prosecutor's office said.

Some 26,000 people remain in emergency shelters a week after the 7.8 magnitude tremblor, officials said.

A total of 29 foreigners have been identified among the dead, including 10 Colombians, two Britons, an Irishman, an Italian, a Frenchman and a German, the office said.

Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa said he would raise the value-added tax by two percentage points for a year and charge wealthy Ecuadorans a capital levy in order to pay for an estimated 3 billion dollars in damage.

The delivery of clean drinking water remains a challenge in the affected region and France announced it would send some 30 soldiers and a water purification system to the South American nation.

Last update: Sun, 24/04/2016 - 10:41
Author: 

More from World

Watchdog: Over 60 per cent of east Aleppo captured by Syrian regime

More than 60 per cent of the rebel enclave of eastern Aleppo has now fallen to Syrian government forces, a...

Nine dead, 25 missing after fire at California warehouse party

At least nine people died and 25 were missing after a fire broke out during a party at a warehouse in the US state...

Car bombing in Baghdad kills at least four, injures 10

A car bomb exploded Saturday in the Iraqi capital Baghdad, killing at least four civilians, police and witnesses...

Egypt's top court revokes police power on protests

Egypt's top court has quashed power granted to police to ban street protests.

Indonesian police release seven accused of treason

Indonesian police on Saturday released seven people, including two former generals and a rock star, a day after they...