Foreign Secretary William Hague has offered his condolences to China, after an earthquake hit the south western province of Sichuan. Mr Hague said today:
I am saddened to hear of the tragic loss of life and destruction caused by today's earthquake in Sichuan Province in China. I offer my deepest condolences to those who have lost loved ones and to all Chinese citizens affected.
Today's events will no doubt bring back terrible memories of the catastrophic earthquake in the same province in 2008.
My thoughts are also with the Chinese authorities and the emergency services as they continue their rescue efforts. We are in contact with local authorities through our Consulate-General in Chongqing and will continue to follow the situation closely.