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Chinese official kills self in city hit by man-made landslide

A Chinese former local government official has killed himself in the southern city of Shenzhen, where a landslide from a mountain of construction waste buried dozens of buildings and left scores of people missing last week.

Shenzen police said in a statement on Monday that Xu Yuanan, the former head of the Urban Management Bureau in the city’s Guangming New District, jumped to his death from a building on Sunday.

Police made no link between 52-year-old Xu’s death and the landslide disaster.

The district government reported on its website that another person had been appointed as head of the agency in charge of managing the construction waste in July, without explaining whether Xu had resigned or been removed.

The landslide, which occurred on December 20, was caused by breaches of construction safety rules and was not a natural disaster, according to Chinese media reports.

Rescuers pull out a survivor from rubble in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, December 23, 2015. (Photo by AFP)

Rescue crews pulled out seven bodies from under the rubble after the landslide; but more than 70 people are still missing. Sixteen people remain hospitalized; three of them are in serious condition, according to local emergency officials.

The landslide buried 33 buildings, including 14 factory buildings, two office buildings, one canteen, three dormitories and 13 low-rise buildings.

The government posted a statement on its website on Friday, warning those responsible for the man-made disaster would be “seriously punished in accordance with the law.”


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