Earthquake in Afghanistan Kills as Many as 920 People, Official Says

KABUL, Afghanistan — A 5.9-magnitude earthquake struck southeastern Afghanistan in a single day, killing as many as 920 folks and injuring greater than 600 others, the nation’s state-run Bakhtar information company stated on Wednesday, citing an official.

The quake struck early Wednesday about 28 miles southwest of town of Khost, a provincial capital in the nation’s southeast, the United States Geological Survey said, and it had a depth of about six miles.

The loss of life toll of 920 was reported by Sharafuddin Muslim, the deputy minister of catastrophe administration, at a information briefing in Kabul.

Raees Hozaifa, the director of data and tradition in the jap province of Paktika, stated the earthquake was felt throughout a number of provinces.

In the Sperah district of Khost Province, northeast of Paktika Province, the earthquake killed a minimum of 40 folks and wounded 100 others, Shabir Ahmad Osmani, Khost’s provincial director of data and tradition, stated by phone.

Rafiullah Rahel, the pinnacle of the well being division in Paktika Province, stated that 381 folks had been useless and 205 injured in that province.

The Bakhtar information company posted video footage on Twitter of a helicopter touchdown in what it stated was a quake-hit space. It stated that ambulances had been transporting the injured to hospitals.

Sarhadi Khosti, 26, who lives in the Sperah district, stated he had been woken up by the earthquake after 1 a.m., and that plenty of homes — particularly these made from soil or wooden — had been fully destroyed. He added that helicopters had transported a few of the wounded to hospitals in Kabul and neighboring provinces.

“For now, we still are busy pulling the dead or injured from under the rubble,” he stated.

Dr. Ramiz Alakbarov, a deputy particular consultant for Afghanistan for the United Nations, wrote on Twitter that the group was assessing the wants and responding in the aftermath of the earthquake. Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director common of the World Health Organization, said on Twitter that the company would “continue supporting people in need across the country.”

The quake struck about 300 miles north-northeast of the positioning of a lethal 6.4 magnitude earthquake in Pakistan in 2008, the united statesG.S. stated.

The earthquake was felt in Kabul, the Afghan capital, and throughout the northern a part of neighboring Pakistan, according to a map that the European Mediterranean Seismological Center posted on its web site. The U.S.G.S. stated {that a} second quake, of 4.5 magnitude, struck about 30 miles southwest of Khost about an hour later.

Prime Minister Shebaz Sharif of Pakistan said he was “deeply grieved” to study concerning the earthquake. In an announcement, Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry stated that it was working to supply assist to Afghanistan. “The people of Pakistan stand in strong solidarity with their Afghan brethren in this difficult time,” the assertion stated.

For civilians in Afghanistan, earthquakes are one more danger in a rustic traumatized by many years of warfare. Many of the nation’s densely populated cities and cities sit on or close to a number of geological faults, a few of which might produce earthquakes of as much as 7 in magnitude.

The earthquake on Wednesday, based on the united statesG.S. appeared to originate from motion between the India and Eurasia tectonic plates.

The company stated in a 2022 report that greater than 7,000 folks had died in the previous decade due to earthquakes, a mean of 560 folks a year. In one space between Kabul and Jalalabad, it estimated that an earthquake of seven.6 would have an effect on seven million folks.

In January, two earthquakes struck a distant, mountainous space of western Afghanistan, killing a minimum of 27 folks and destroying lots of of properties, officers stated on the time. Another earthquake in 2015 killed greater than 300 folks in northern Afghanistan and Pakistan and destroyed hundreds of properties.

Safiullah Padshah reported from Kabul, Afghanistan, and Mike Ives from Seoul. Isabella Kwai and Emma Bubola contributed reporting from London.

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