New Zealand quake: Toll rises to 123

February 26th, 2011 - 9:03 am ICT by IANS  

Christchurch, Feb 26 (IANS) The toll in New Zealand’s earthquake-hit Christchurch city has reached 123 and is expected to rise further Saturday, police said.The magnitude 6.3 earthquake hit Christchurch Feb 22.

Police superintendent Dave Cliff told the media Saturday morning that 123 people had been confirmed dead. “We do expect that number to rise today.”

Two hundred people remained missing, New Zealand Herald reported.

Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker said people needed to steel themselves for the toll to rise considerably in the coming days.

“It’s a sad morning with the confirmed death toll now up to 123 people,” Parker said.

“As we kept saying to our people in Christchurch and those around New Zealand and the world, you need to understand that you need to steel yourself for that number to increase in the days ahead. We know that will not be an easy time. This will not get easy in a hurry,” he said.

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