113 people rescued alive in quake-hit Ecuador

Quito, April 23 (IANS) A total of 113 people have been rescued alive since a 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit Ecuador on April 16, the Ministry of Communication announced on Friday.

However, the death toll now stands at 587, with over 8,430 people injured and 153 still missing, according to latest statistics.

Furthermore, 25,376 people remain in shelters after six days, while over 1,000 rescuers continue to look for survivors, despite dwindling hope of finding any.

International aid has continued to arrive, especially to the western province of Manabi, which was closest to the epicenter, while basic services were being restored.

On April 20, President Rafael Correa hailed the achievements of national and international rescuers as they continued to save lives.

“There has been great success, a large number of rescues have happened, and every effort was worthwhile,” said the head of state on Wednesday.

The Ministry of Communications also stated that drinking water had been restored in the province of Esmeraldas and was 62 percent back in Manabi.

Furthermore, it announced that the electrical grid was not functioning normally across the country and that hydroelectric plants had not been affected. In the cities of Manta and Portoviejo, both in Manabi, electrical service is now functioning at 82 and 90 percent, respectively.

Finally, in all of Manabi, cellphone service stands at 74.2 percent, according to the ministry on Friday.

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