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Peru earthquake kills four, including tourist

A shallow magnitude 5.4 earthquake centred in southern Peru's picturesque Colca Valley has killed at least four people, including a tourist, and left 30 injured.

The quake hit at 9.58pm local time on Sunday (0258 GMT) near the town of Chivay near the city of Arequipa, with an epicentre just six miles (10 kilometres) deep, according to the US Geological Survey.

The tourist, a 65-year-old American man, died at the Eco Inn Valle del Colca in Yanque, close to Chivay, when part of the hotel's ceiling collapsed on him, said local governor Cipriano Llasa.

"His body is inside the hotel because the highways are blocked and the prosecutor has not arrived," Mr Llasa said.

The walls and roofs of dozens of adobe homes in Yanque collapsed in the quake, Mr Llasa said. "A lot of irrigation canals are destroyed, too."

He said the only way to evacuate the injured was by helicopter.

Yanque is an hour's drive from a famed condor-watching outlook that is popular with foreign tourists.

Peru's last major earthquake, of magnitude 7.9, hit on August 15 2007 and killed nearly 600 people in the coastal city of Pisco.



From Belfast Telegraph