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12 bodies recovered after landslide buries hotel in China

Authorities in China say they've recovered the bodies of 12 people killed inside a hotel overrun by a landslide.

5 people were pulled from debris alive, but 2 later died in hospital

Rescuers carry person rescued from the site of landslide near a hotel in Xiangyang, Hubei province, China. Five people were pulled from the debris alive, but two later died in hospital. (Reuters)

Authorities in China say they've recovered the bodies of 12 people killed inside a hotel overrun by a landslide.

State media reported Sunday that rescuers were able to pull out everyone trapped underneath rocks and debris after the Friday night landslide in Hubei province.

The official Xinhua News Agency said 3,000 cubic metres of debris tumbled down a slope behind the three-story hotel in Nanzhang county. The largest rock weighed 150 tonnes. The amount of debris hampered rescuers worried about the rocks caving in or sliding further.

The cause of the collapse remains under investigation.

Rescuers earlier had pulled five survivors from the debris, two of whom died in a hospital. Three others are out of life-threatening danger and receiving further treatment in the hospital. 

The people buried ranged in age from 17 to 61 and were eating at the hotel restaurant on the ground floor at the time of disaster.  

Hilly and densely populated, the area is frequently struck by landslides triggered by heavy rainfall.

Rescuers search for trapped people at a site of landslide near a hotel in Hubei province, China. So far, 12 bodies have been recovered. (Reuters)