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Last Updated: Friday, 11 November 2005, 17:13 GMT
Police clash with quake survivors
Protests in Muzaffarabad
Police say survivors must move to longer-term accommodation
Pakistani police have baton-charged about 200 survivors of the 8 October quake who were protesting at being evicted from a makeshift camp.

Police used canes to break up the march in the centre of Muzaffarabad in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir.

Police said the camp had inadequate sanitation but protesters said they had nowhere else to go.

In some areas winter weather is now setting in, increasing fears time is running out to bring aid and shelter.

Pakistan's official death toll for the quake is 73,000 although donors and aid agencies have placed the figure much higher.

Informal camps

A number of protesters were hurt in the demonstration in Muzaffarabad when about 50 police blocked their path.

Demonstrators reportedly threw rubble at police.

Police had ordered the camp, known as Jalalabad gardens, situated in a park near the city's destroyed library, to be closed.

"They were ordered to leave the temporary camp because it was set up in the middle of the city and it did not have any proper sanitation or waste disposal facilities," police chief Shahid Hassan told the AFP news agency.

Protesters in Muzaffarabad
Protesters say the government wants to build more offices

Additional deputy commissioner for Muzaffarabad, Atuallah Ata, said five people had been arrested on charges of violating a ban on gatherings of more than four people.

He told the BBC's Javed Soomro in Muzaffarabad that two policemen were wounded but he did not know of casualties among protesters.

Mr Ata said quake survivors should move to bigger tent villages that were more suitable for longer-term accommodation.

He hoped to find a peaceful solution but force would be used if necessary.

One demonstrator, Salim Shah, said he had been beaten with batons.

"They ordered us to leave the Jalalabad gardens. They said they would come with bulldozers, so we protested. We have no other place to go."

Protesters say the authorities want to move them out to build more government offices.

They say they are determined to stay put.

Winter winning

A number of informal camps have sprung up since the quake, with poor facilities.

Makeshift camp in Muzaffarabad
A number of informal camps have sprung up since the quake

This week there have been a number of cases of acute diarrhoea.

Fears are also increasing for survivors in more remote regions as winter weather arrives.

The BBC's Chris Morris, who has flown into more isolated regions, says not enough aid has yet reached places high in the mountains where isolated communities are scattered across the ridges and down in the valleys.

Villagers travel to military bases for aid from as far away as eight kilometres then distribute the aid through to the villages.

Our correspondent says helicopters will soon be unable to operated in the region.

Aid agencies say they are prioritising help to high-altitude communities.

However, UN coordinator Rashid Khalikov admitted: "In the meantime, we do not have enough resources to take care of those who are in the lowlands. Their vulnerability also increases dramatically."



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