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Families protest unapproved cremation of landslide victims


15:03, January 14, 2013

ZHENXIONG, Yunnan, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) -- About 40 family members of landslide victims in southwest China's Yunnan Province have protested after their loved ones' bodies were cremated without their approval.

The people gathered on the road to the landslide rescue and disaster relief headquarters in Zhenxiong County on Sunday night, blocking dozens of vehicles, Zhu Henghui, office director with the Zhenxiong County Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), said early on Monday.

The crowd did not disperse until 2 a.m. Monday, according to Zhu.

The landslide, which occurred in the Zhenxiong village of Gaopo on Friday, killed 46 villagers and injured another two.

Government authorities had cremated all the bodies by Sunday, triggering anger from the victims' family members. According to the tradition of the village, where dwellers are mostly of Yi ethnicity, bodies of the dead are usually buried instead of cremated.

Moreover, the family members, most of whom worked in cities and escaped the disaster, said they did not even have a chance to say goodbye to their deceased relatives because of the unapproved cremation.

"I had expected to have a final look at my child," said Zhao Mingcai, a migrant worker who rushed home from the provincial capital of Kunming on hearing the news.

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