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15 confirmed dead in earthquake

The bodies of three victims of the earthquake were found on Saturday in a partially collapsed building, The Central Emergency Operation Centre (CEOC) has said.

The bodies of three victims of the earthquake were found on Saturday in a partially collapsed building, The Central Emergency Operation Centre (CEOC) has said.

“The bodies of a man, a woman and a boy were pulled from the rubble.

“They were among the last five people known to be missing beneath the rubble of the 12-storey commercial and residential complex in the eastern coastal city of Hualien”, CEOC said.

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Taiwan’s state-run Central News Agency reports that the five victims included a 12-year-old boy, his parents and maternal grandparents.

“They were staying at the Beauty Inn, when the quake caused the building to tilt, squashing the lower four floors”.

A magnitude-4.3 earthquake struck eastern Taiwan Saturday afternoon, postponing the search operation. According to the Central Weather Bureau, the quake was one of more than 280 aftershocks following Tuesday’s magnitude-6.0 earthquake.

Emergency responders, who smelled a stench of dead bodies at the site, continued to search for the two people who remained missing, CEOC said Saturday.

Earlier this week, the bodies of a Canadian couple, four Chinese tourists, a Taiwanese tourist, and a hotel employee were found in the hotel’s wreckage.

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In the same building, a Filipino caretaker was found dead late Thursday, while three other people were found in the rubble of Hualien.

At least 280 people were injured across the city and four tall buildings partially collapsed in Tuesday’s earthquake. A seriously injured patient remained critical in a Hualien hospital, CEOC said Saturday.

Prosecutors in Hualien said that a probe had been launched to determine if human error contributed to the partial collapse of the buildings.

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