Over 120 people buried by massive China landslide

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BEIJING — More than 120 people were buried by a landslide that caused huge rocks and a mass of earth to come crashing into their homes in a mountain village in southwestern China early Saturday, officials said.

The landslide, which came from a mountain, engulfed a cluster of 62 homes and a hotel in the village of Xinmo in Mao County at about 6 a.m., the Sichuan provincial government said. Officials said 1.6 kilometers (1 mile) of road were buried in the disaster.

“It’s the biggest landslide to hit this area since the Wenchuan earthquake,” Wang Yongbo, an official leading one of the rescue efforts, told state broadcaster China Central Television. Wang was referring to China’s deadliest earthquake this century, a magnitude 7.9 temblor that struck Sichuan province in May 2008, killing nearly 90,000 people.

The provincial government said more than 120 people were buried by the landslide. CCTV cited a rescuer as saying five bodies had been found.

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