ANKARA/BAGHDAD, Nov 13 (Reuters) – More than 450 people were killed in Iran when a magnitude 7.3 earthquake jolted the country, state media said on Monday, and rescuers were searching for dozens trapped under rubble in the mountainous area. At least six have died in Iraq as well.
Iran’s English-language Press TV said more than 450 people were killed and 7,000 were injured in Iran’s deadliest earthquake in more than a decade. Local officials said the death toll would rise as search and rescue teams reached remote areas of Iran.
The earthquake, which struck on Sunday, was felt in several western provinces of Iran but the hardest hit province was Kermanshah. More than 300 of the victims were in Sarpol-e Zahab county in Kermanshah province, about 15 km (10 miles) from the Iraq border.
Iranian state television said the quake had caused heavy damage in some villages where houses were made of earthen bricks. Rescuers were laboring to find survivors trapped under collapsed buildings.
Iranian media reported that a woman and her baby were pulled out alive from the rubble on Monday in , the worst hit area with a population of 85,000.
The quake also triggered landslides that hindered rescue efforts, officials told state television. At least 14 provinces in Iran had been affected, Iranian media reported.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei offered his condolences on Monday, urging all government agencies to do all they could to help those affected. State TV appealed for blood donations.
The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake measured magnitude 7.3. An Iraqi meteorology official put its magnitude at 6.5, with the epicenter in Penjwin in Sulaimaniyah province in the Kurdistan region, close to the main border crossing with Iran.
Prelim M7.2 earthquake Iran-Iraq border region Nov-12 18:18 UTC, updates https://t.co/QIaZuvWNXu
— USGS Big Quakes (@USGSBigQuakes) November 12, 2017
Tempers frayed in the quake-hit area as the search went on for survivors amidst the twisted rubble of collapsed buildings. State TV aired footage of damaged buildings, vehicles under rubble and wounded people wrapped in blankets.
“We need a shelter,” a middle-aged man in Sarpol-e Zahab told state TV. “Where is the aid? Where is the help?” His family could not spend another night outside in cold weather, he said.
Kurdish health officials said at least six people were killed in Iraq and at least 68 injured, adding that in northern Iraq Kurdish districts seven were killed and 325 wounded.
Iraq’s health …read more
Source:: The Huffington Post – Australia