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As the death toll rises to 75, US President Barack Obama has sent his support to the people of Christchurch, New Zealand, following yesterday’s devastating earthquake.

Obama has offered “our deepest condolences” to the people of New Zealand and the families and friends of earthquake victims.

“To assist in the rescue and recovery efforts, we have agreed to deploy a U.S. Agency for International Development Disaster Assistance Response Team, including an Urban Search and Rescue Team, and we stand ready to provide more assistance as needed,” he said. “As our New Zealand friends move forward, may they find some comfort and strength in knowing that they will have the enduring friendship and support of many partners around the world, including the United States.”

British Prime Minister David Cameron has also reached out to victims of the 6.3 quake, which has seen thousands made homeless, while hundreds remain missing.

“There are many people in Britain with ties of friendship or family to New Zealand,” he said. “They will be following events particularly closely and with understandable anxiety. I believe I speak on behalf of everyone in our country when I say that we all stand with New Zealand at this moment, at this dark and difficult time.”

New Zealand Prime Minister, John Key, has declared a national state of emergency – the first time this has happened in the country’s history.

To help victims of the earthquake via the Red Cross, please visit the New Zealand Red Cross.

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