At the end of a tragic day for Italy, there is little that I can add to the news updates that you will all be following in your own countries but here are some snippets:
As I write, just before midnight in Italy, the death toll is 159 and 368 people are reported injured. Rescuers are still working, however, so these figures are expected to rise.
Early this evening the Mayor of Amatrice said that he thought 100 people were still missing in the town. There is said to be nothing left of Amatrice and for me the most poignant image of the day has been of the town's clock tower with rubble all around it and the clock's hands resting at 3.36, the time this morning when the earthquake struck, [Eerily it was at 3.32 am on 6.4.09 that the L'Aquila earthquake struck.]
A ten-year-old girl was pulled out alive at Pescara del Tronto after 17 hours. Sadly her sister has died.
A 28-year-old Sicilian man from Siracusa Province was pulled out from the rubble of the bakery where he had been working in Amatrice this afternoon.
The youngest victim was an 8-month-old baby.
At least 1,000 people have lost their homes.
Reports of strong aftershocks are coming in frequently.
In Ascoli Piceno 20 asylum seekers have asked if they can go and help the rescue effort in the village of Amandola. In Gioioso in Reggio Calabria 75 migrants have offered the allowance they receive in Italy to families affected by the quake. I am sure that other migrants and refugees are also offering help.
People around the country have been queuing to donate blood since the first news of the quake broke.
If you are in Italy, you can donate €2 by texting a message of support to the number below or by calling the number from a landline:
You may find other ways in which you can help here.
Food blogger Paolo Campana has come up with the idea of raising funds through Amatrice's famous pasta dish: for every plate of spaghetti all'amatriciana ordered, participating restaurants will donate €2 to the earthquake fund via the Italian Red Cross:
The Italian information hotline number for the earthquake is:
800 840 840
It may seem that there is nothing we can say or do but we can donate funds if we are in a position to do so and blood if we are in Italy. There is also a need for underwear and blankets for the many displaced people and these should be taken to your nearest Protezione Civile branch if you are in Italy. [Please check with them first.] But most of all, Italy tonight needs our love.
Albinoni [attrib.] / Giazotto - Adagio in sol minore