Death toll in Chile quake above 700

A man sitting with his belongings outside his home in Talca, Chile. (REUTERS)

Police have fired tear-gas and imposed an overnight curfew to control looters who sacked virtually every market in the quake-hit city of Concepcion as Chile's earthquake toll surpassed 700. President Michelle Bachelet has promised imminent deliveries of food, water and shelter for thousands living on the streets.

The magnitude-8.8 quake – one of the biggest in centuries – that hit Chile on Saturday killed at least 708 people and destroyed or badly damaged 500,000 homes.

In Concepcion, 515km south of Santiago, firefighters yesterday were seeking survivors in a toppled apartment building, a day after they had to pause because of tear gas fired at looters.


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