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China relaxes birth restrictions for victim families of mudslide-hit county

(Xinhua)

14:49, August 05, 2011

China has relaxed its birth-planning policy for families who lost children in a massive mudslide that hit northwest China one year ago.

Operations to untie women's tubes, who'd had them tied as a result of past enforcement of the family planning policy, will soon be free in Zhouqu, officials said on Friday, on eve of the anniversary of the mudslide devastation that left more than 1,700 people dead or missing in the county in Gansu Province on Aug. 7, 2010.

Liang Jianjun, head of Zhouqu's family planning bureau, said such operations have been performed on women from 27 families. "Some of these women are pregnant now," he said.

China's planned birth policy, which restricts most urban families to one child, grants favorable treatment to families in the countryside and ethnic regions. In Zhouqu, rural families can have two children while those in five Tibetan-dominated towns and villages can have three.

Families who lost their children are allowed new births to fill the "quotas," officials said.

"With people, we can have everything," said Yang Chaomei, the matriarch of a local family that lost all eight children in the mudslide.

Yang said she was pleased to see two daughters-in-law give birth after the disaster. "I hope I can have a grandson who will inherit the family line," she said.

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