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Powerful earthquake on Iran-Iraq border kills more than 140

10:3 HRS IST

Tehran, Nov 13 (AP) A powerful earthquake shook the
Iran-Iraq border, killing more than 140 people and injuring
860 in the mountainous region of Iran alone, state media there
said.

The Baghdad government did not immediately give word on
damage or casualties in that country.

The 7.3-magnitude quake was centered 31 kilometres
outside the eastern Iraqi city of Halabja yesterday, according
to the most recent measurements from the US Geological Survey.

It struck at a depth of 23.2 kilometers, a shallow depth
that can have broader damage. Magnitude 7 earthquakes on their
own are capable of widespread, heavy damage.

The quake was felt as far west as the Mediterranean
coast. Its worst damage appeared to be in Iran’s western
Kermanshah province, which sits in the Zagros Mountains that
divide Iran and Iraq. Residents in the rural area rely mainly
on farming to make a living.

Iranian social media and news agencies showed images and
videos of people fleeing their homes into the night. Some 50
aftershocks have followed.

The state-run IRNA news agency disclosed the increase in
casualties early today and said rescue work was continuing
overnight and would accelerate during the daytime.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei offered his
condolences this morning and urged rescuers and all government
agencies to do all they could to help those affected, state
media reported.

The semi-official ILNA news agency said at least 14
provinces in Iran had been affected by the earthquake.

Officials announced that schools in Kermanshah and Ilam
provinces would be closed today because of the tremor.

Iranian state TV also said Iraqi officials reported at
least six people dead inside Iraq, along with more than 50
people injured in Sulaymaniyah province and about 150 in the
city of Khanaquin.

Iran sits on many major fault lines and is prone to near-
daily quakes. In 2003, a magnitude 6.6 earthquake flattened
the historic city of Bam, killing 26,000 people. The last
major casualty earthquake in Iran struck in East Azerbaijan
province in August 2012, killing over 300 people.

Source of news : Ptinews

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