Millions of people in China and overseas observed three minutes silence at 2:28 p.m. Monday to mourn thousands of people killed in an earthquake which hit the nation's southwest a week ago.
Across the country, air raid sirens, cars, trains and ship horns wailed in grief as the people fell silent.
Chinese bourses and commodities exchanges also suspended trading for three minutes in remembrance of the earthquake dead.
The three-minute remembrance is part of three-day national mourning for those who died in the 8.0-magnitude earthquake. More than 32,000 people have been confirmed dead and the estimated death toll could top 50,000.
National flags flew at half mast, public entertainments were cancelled and the Olympic torch relay was suspended during the three-day mourning period.
(Xinhua News Agency May 19, 2008)