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Chinese Premier demands better response to floods

Updated: 2016-07-31 09:13

Chinese Premier demands better response to floods

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (3rd R front) visits State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters and chairs over a special meeting on flood control and disaster relief as well as settlement and reconstruction in the next phase of deployment in Beijing, capital of China, July 29, 2016. [Photo/Xinhua]

BEIJING - Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has urged local authorities to stay alert for floods and make more efforts to prevent casualties as the country faces "a grim situation" in flood control.

Li made the remarks while inspecting the Office of State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters on Friday.

Local governments must strengthen monitoring and early warning of floods and defuse risks to protect people's lives as well as major projects and facilities, Li said.

In areas that might be exposed to extreme rainfalls, detailed evacuation plans must be made to ensure responsibilities are clearly defined and alerts passed to the remotest corner, the premier told officials.

Casualties caused by weak responses will not be tolerated, he said.

The premier noted that problems have been revealed in some places, such as inadequate flood control capability and ineffective emergency response.

He said flood control remains a complicated task, telling authorities not to underestimate the difficulties and take seriously the possibility of more disasters including waterlogging, mountain floods and mud-rock flows.

The country faces a rarely grim situation in flood control this year, impacted by super El Nino, and July-August is a critical period, he said.

He demanded timely distribution of funds and materials to make sure displaced people have food to eat, clothes to wear, water to drink, shelters to live in and doctors to see.

Priority of the rebuilding plan must be given to schools and hospitals, as well as infrastructures such as water supply, road, electricity and telecommunications, the premier said.

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