Ma Xiaotian, deputy chief of the General Staff of the Chinese People's Liberation Army, talked on the telephone on Sunday with Timothy Keating, commander-in-chief of the U.S. Pacific Command, over the massive quake that struck southwestern China last Monday.
In their conversation, Ma thanked the U.S. Department of Defense for sending disaster relief materials to China's Sichuan province following the quake and briefed Keating on the damage caused by the quake and the rescue efforts of the Chinese armed forces.
The Chinese people and armed forces will continue their all-out efforts in the battle against the quake until a victory is secured, Ma said.
Keating expressed sympathy and condolences to the people affected by the earthquake and praised the rapid response and professionalism of the Chinese armed forces in their rescue and disaster relief efforts.
The 8.0-magnitude quake, centered on Wenchuan County in Sichuan province, affected many parts of the country on May 12. The death toll stood at 32,477 as of Sunday while 220,109 people were injured.
(Xinhua News Agency May 19, 2008)