The Secretary-General of the UN, Mr António Guterres, says he is saddened to learn of the loss of lives and devastation caused by the mudslides in Maoxin county, Sichuan Province, in China.
Guterres, in a statement by Mr Stéphane Dujarric, the Spokesman for the secretary-general, condoled the Government and people of China over the incident.
The massive landslide buried more than 120 people, with 15 confirmed dead and 118 still missing, according to reports.
The secretary-general saluted the efforts of the national relief and recovery teams.
“The United Nations stands ready to support the authorities in any way it can if needed,’’ Guterres said.
The UN chief, while extending his condolences to the people and Government of China, wished those injured a speedy recovery.
About 1,000 rescue workers using life-detection equipment hustled through the night to locate survivors. Dozens of homes were buried.
Heavy rainfall is thought to be a possible cause of the accident, according to the provincial government’s Land and Resources Department.
Chinese President Xi Jinping said in a statement “authorities must make maximum efforts to reduce casualties and prevent secondary disasters’’.
“Relatives of the missing and those suffering losses in the disaster will be given appropriate care’’, Xi said.
Xi called for “all-out efforts’’ to save those who were buried as authorities inaugurated the highest level of disaster response.
The landslide occurred at 6 a.m. local time Saturday in Xinmo village in Mao County, Aba Prefecture, reports said.
A smaller, second landslide caused huge rocks to fall onto the village, which made it more difficult for heavy machinery to get to the scene, according to reports.