Christchurch is like a war zone: Malaysian student
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Last Updated: Wednesday, February 23, 2011, 16:32
Kuala Lumpur: "It sounds like the place has been bombed and we are in a war zone," said a Malaysian student who survived the earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Abdullah Mohd Nawi said he was in an education centre where he was teaching English when the mishap occurred. Christchurch was hit by a powerful earthquake measuring 6.3 on the Richter scale yesterday, toppling tall office buildings and leaving at least 65 people dead.

This is the second time in six months the city was hit by earthquake after the first, measuring 7.1 on the Richter scale which occurred in September last year.

"The quake tossed me several metres away from where I stood. My legs were badly bruised, my shoes were torn but I managed to hide under the table to avoid being hit by falling objects," said the doctoral student of Canterbury University. The situation at that moment was chaotic and he saw smoke and debris everywhere, he said.

"Soon after I got out of the building, I didn't know where to go. I was very scared, especially upon seeing people running around for safety and hearing sirens from police and ambulance vehicles, and fire engines," said the father of two who later joined hundreds of other victims at an open field in Victoria Square to avoid the aftershocks.

"To get to Victoria Square, we have to wade through sewage water flowing from burst pipes and walk barefoot and in the process, sustain was really tormenting," he added.

Meanwhile, former associate editor of The Star daily, Hah Foong Lian, who is pursuing her PhD in the city, said she escaped unhurt.

"I am fine. Rattled and shaken by what happened but I am fine. The house I am in, is still standing but just further down the road, a woman was killed under a pile of rubble in a book shop," she said in an email to Bernama.


First Published: Wednesday, February 23, 2011, 16:32

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