PORTOVIEJO, April 19, 2016 (Xinhua) -- Image taken on April 18, 2016 provided by the Ecuadorian and South American Public News Agency ANDES shows people standing in front of a collapsed building by the earthquake, in Portoviejo, Ecuador. The death toll from Saturday's earthquake in northern Ecuador had risen to 480 by Tuesday morning, the government said. About 4,027 people were injured and 231 more missing, Deputy Interior Minister Diego Fuentes said according to local daily El Telegrafo. (XinhuaCesar MunozANDES)

QUITO, April 19 (Xinhua) -- Saturday's major earthquake in Ecuador has left at least 499 dead, the Prosecutor's Office announced on Tuesday.

In the worst-hit area of Pedernales in the western province of Manabi, 159 deaths have been registered. In the tourist port of Manta, 142 bodies were found. In Portoviejo, capital of Manabi, all 116 bodies have been identified and handed over to their families, according to the office.

In addition, at least 4,027 people were injured and 231 people were missing, the National Ministry for Risk Management announced previously.

The ministry also said that 20,503 people are currently being housed in shelters after the magnitude-7.8 earthquake.

Some good news broke the gloom Tuesday as three people were found alive in the rubble of a building in Manta, according to Ecuador's firefighter chief Ebber Arroyo.

"We found three people alive at around 4:30 a.m., and we are continuing the work to find survivors," said Arroyo.

The rescued, two women and a man, were immediately taken to hospital for urgent medical care.

Vice President Jorge Glas said in a Twitter update Tuesday morning that power supply was coming back in most of Manabi, and an evaluation of the infrastructure would be carried out once power is fully restored.

The government has ordered 12,000 food rations and bottled water for people affected by the quake, announced Public Administration Secretary Pedro Solines.

Defense Minister Ricardo Patino said that they are concentrating on humanitarian aid for the moment. A reconstruction plan for Manabi and other affected areas would be established later on.

International rescue teams and aid are flooding into Ecuador. The Red Cross Society of China has provided 100,000 U.S. dollars in cash for emergency assistance, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said Tuesday.

The Chinese government is accelerating the making of a humanitarian assistance plan and will provide satellite pictures to Ecuador for relief efforts.

Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa, who was visiting the disaster area Tuesday, estimated that losses due to the quake would amount to around 3 billion U.S. dollars, or 3 percent of the gross domestic product.

Correa said Monday that local governments were responsible for the poor construction of some buildings that collapsed in the quake.

"We would draw lessons for the future from this painful experience," he said, asking for far more rigorous construction norms.

Related:

Death toll in Ecuador earthquake climbs to 480, survivors found

QUITO, April 19 (Xinhua) -- The death toll from Saturday's earthquake in northern Ecuador had risen to 480 by Tuesday morning, the government said.

About 4,027 people were injured and 231 more missing, Deputy Interior Minister Diego Fuentes was quoted by local daily El Telegrafo as saying. Full story

At least 150,000 children affected by Ecuador earthquake: UNICEF

UNITED NATIONS, April 19 (Xinhua) -- At least 150,000 children are affected by Saturday's earthquake in Ecuador, the strongest tremor to strike the Andean country in decades, according to initial estimates by the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) issued here Tuesday.

"We are in a race against time to protect children from disease and other risks common in such emergencies," said Grant Leaity, the UNICEF representative in Ecuador. Full story

China pledges humanitarian aid to quake-hit Ecuador

BEIJING, April 19 (Xinhua) -- The Red Cross Society of China has provided 100,000 U.S. dollars in cash for emergency assistance to its Ecuadorian counterpart in the wake of a deadly earthquake, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Tuesday.

The Chinese government is accelerating the making of a humanitarian assistance plan and will provide satellite pictures to Ecuador for relief efforts, Hua Chunying said in response to a question about specific assistance measures China would provide to the South American nation. Full story [Editor: huaxia]

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