Chilean Quake Victims Demand Speedier Reconstruction

Santiago de Chile, Jul 16 (Prensa Latina) The inhabitants of one of the largest refugee camps set up in the Biobio region after the Feb. 27, 2010 earthquake held protests demanding speedier reconstruction efforts.

The people sheltered in the Aldea Molino de Dichato camp, many of whom lived in the devastated town of Tome, have begun a series of demonstrations over what they say is the slow pace of reconstruction and the lack of a permanent home, Radio Biobio reported Saturday.

Protesters said authorities have not kept their promises, and are demanding the reconstruction of their town, as opposed to being sent to other areas, which they describe as uninhabitable.

A recent poll by the Corbiobio Studies Center revealed 69.7 percent of inhabitants in the VIII Region believe the reconstruction process has taken longer than expected.

On February 27, 2010, a 8.8-magnitude earthquake and a tsunami affected the regions of Valparaiso, Metropolitana de Santiago, O’Higgins, Maule, Biobio and Araucania, home to nearly 80 percent of the Chilean population.

In Maule and Biobio, the quake, considered the second strongest in the history of Chile and one of the most powerful registered in the planetâ�Ös history, left 525 dead and 23 missing people.

The earthquake caused devastation in cities like Constitucion, Concepcion, Cobquecura and the port of Talcahuano, while downtown Talca was almost completely destroyed.

The quake destroyed 500,000 homes and left another half a million damaged.

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