Production resumption in quake areas urged
BEIJING -- Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao has called for resumption of production in the earthquake-hit regions as reconstruction efforts get under way.
Wen made the appeal to all branches of government, saying bringing normalcy back to the regions and taking care of lives remain the main goals, Xinhua reported.
He emphasized agricultural production as a priority, urging transport departments to ensure timely supplies of fertilizer, diesel oil and seed for the summer crops. He called for special efforts to control animal diseases and to dispose of waste to protect the environment.
Wen said efforts to resume industrial production should pay special attention to energy resources, including coal.
The official death toll as of Tuesday was put at 69,107. Government funding for disaster relief now exceeds $3.32 billion, Xinhua reported.
In other developments, however, there was growing anger among parents whose children died when their schools collapsed. A BBC report said authorities were trying to contain the outrage. In one instance, parents were stopped from suing the principal of one collapsed school where hundreds died.
What has set off the parents is that in some quake-hit districts schools were the only structures destroyed. Authorities had earlier promised an investigation but now seem to be changing their minds, the report said.
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