UN Secretary General Urges Int'l Help for Quake-Stricken El Salvador

United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan on Sunday expressed his condolences and called on the international community to provide assistance for El Salvador, where more than 250 people were dead and at least hundreds were injured in a strong earthquake.

"The Secretary-General extends his deepest condolences to the government and people of El Salvador for the loss of life and property that has occurred as a result of Saturday's earthquake," Annan said in a statement to the government of El Salvador.

While expressing his gratitude to the governments and individuals for their relief efforts so far, Annan urged the international communities as a whole "to be generous in its response" to help the suffered people.

"The United Nations will extend all efforts within its means to help the affected populations," Annan added.

The quake measuring 7.7 on the Richter scale that occurred at midday Saturday has also left 1,200 people missing, and the death toll was expected to go up further, the Red Cross said.

Salvadoran President Francisco Flores has declared a national emergency and appealed for international aid.

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