Photograph: ChristChurch Cathedral

A cardboard cathedral is to be built in the centre of Christchurch, New Zealand, as a temporary replacement for the city’s landmark cathedral, which is being controversially demolished after sustaining damage in a series of earthquakes.

The “transitional church”, designed by Japanese architect Shigeru Ban, will be located in Latimer Square, close to Cathedral Square. It will be built on the site of St John’s church, which was demolished after suffering severe damage in the largest of the earthquakes to hit the city in February last year.

A family pays its respects to victims of the tsunami at Okawa primary school, near Ishinomaki, where 74 children were killed and four are still missing
Daniel Berehulak

Haiti earthquake: two years on

Thousands of Haitians are still displaced, living in camps, amid rubble and squalid conditions while the government says it has only received half the aid that was promised

Japanese MP drinks Fukushima water

It was a simple gulp of water, but one that Japan's government hopes will carry symbolic importance as it seeks to ease concern over decontamination efforts at the scene of the county's nuclear crisis.

Yasuhiro Sonoda, an MP in the governing Democratic party of Japan (DPJ), was visibly nervous as his lips met a glass of water collected from inside two reactor buildings at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The 44-year-old had been cajoled into making the gesture by journalists who repeatedly asked him to substantiate government claims that decontamination efforts at the plant were progressing.

Full story: 'Japanese MP drinks Fukushima water under pressure from journalists'


Dramatic rescue of two-week-old baby girl from rubble in Turkey

Rescue workers carry a baby from a collapsed building in Ercis, October 25, 2011. A 14-day-old baby was rescued alive from the rubble of a collapsed building on Tuesday, 46 hours after an earthquake struck southeast Turkey. We’re just hearing now that they were able to also rescue the baby’s mother and grandmother who was trapped under the debris as death toll climbs above 400.. (Source)

Mother and grandmother rescued too - read the full story here.

(via newsflick)

Eyewitness: Turkey earthquake rescue

Residents of the city of Van in eastern Turkey rescue two women trapped in rubble by a powerful earthquake. Officials fear the death toll could reach 1,000 Photograph: Ali Ihsan Ozturk/Reuters

Video: Japan tsunami photos returned

Video by Hikaru Toda

In an effort to save the memories of a nation, muddied photographs and albums sent from tsunami-hit areas are washed and repackaged by an army of volunteers across Japan before being returned to their owners

Heroic rescue of Japanese family in tsunami-hit Sendai

Source: Reuters

'We lost everything in a split second'

Survivor testimony from Miyagi prefecture recounts the devastating effect of the Japanese tsunami.

By Dan Chung and Laurence Topham.

'We're still feeling the aftershocks'

From Tokyo-based commenter SaffronHS reporting from the aftermath of an 8.9 magnitude earthquake:

It’s 25:24, still in the office - and still feeling aftershocks. We are feeling rather sick, both from devastating news and dizziness of actual shaking. Odakyu line (departs from Shinjyuku and goes into Kanagawa) started running again, and will be running through the night, but some of us decided it’s better waiting until the sun is up; it’s cold outside, and we are not sure if we can get onto the train at all - it must be fully packed now, and might not be able to get on board.