sunny.png
Monday August 15th, 2022 6:23PM

Eastern Afghanistan earthquake kills at least 255 people

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — An earthquake struck eastern Afghanistan early Wednesday, killing at least 255 people, authorities said.

Information remained scarce on the magnitude 6 temblor that struck Paktika province, but it comes as the international community largely has left Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover of the country last year amid the chaotic withdrawal of the U.S. military from the longest war in its history.

That likely will complicate any relief efforts for this country of 38 million people.

The state-run Bakhtar news agency reported the death toll and said rescuers were arriving by helicopter. The news agency's director-general, Abdul Wahid Rayan, wrote on Twitter that 90 houses have been destroyed in Paktika and dozens of people are believed trapped under the rubble.

Footage from Paktika province near the Pakistan border showed victims being carried into helicopters to be airlifted from the area. Images widely circulating online from the province showed destroyed stone houses, with residents picking through clay bricks and other rubble.

Bakhtar posted footage of a resident receiving IV fluids from a plastic chair outside the rubble of his home and others sprawled on gurneys.

“A severe earthquake shook four districts of Paktika province, killing and injuring hundreds of our countrymen and destroying dozens of houses,” Bilal Karimi, a deputy spokesman for the Taliban government, separately wrote on Twitter. “We urge all aid agencies to send teams to the area immediately to prevent further catastrophe.”

In just one district of the neighboring Khost province, the earthquake killed at least 25 people and injured over 95 others, local officials said while warning the death toll would rise without urgent government help.

From Kabul, Prime Minister Mohammad Hassan Akhund convened an emergency meeting at the Presidential Palace to coordinate the relief effort for victims in Paktika and Khost.

The U.N. resident coordinator in Afghanistan, Ramiz Alakbarov, expressed condolences to the victims and said that the world body's agencies were responding to the earthquake's devastation.

“Response is on it’s way,” he wrote on Twitter.

Neighboring Pakistan’s Meteorological Department put the earthquake at a magnitude 6.1. Tremors were felt in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, and elsewhere in the eastern Punjab province. Some remote areas of Pakistan saw reports of damage to homes near the Afghan border, but it wasn't immediately clear if that was due to rain or the earthquake, said Taimoor Khan, a disaster management spokesperson in the area.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif in a statement offered his condolences over the earthquake, saying his nation will provide help to the Afghan people.

The European seismological agency, EMSC, said the earthquake’s tremors were felt over 500 kilometers (310 miles) by 119 million people across Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.

Mountainous Afghanistan and the larger region of South Asia along the Hindu Kush mountains, where the Indian tectonic plate collides with the Eurasian plate to the north, has long been vulnerable to devastating earthquakes. Poor construction for homes, hospitals and other buildings put them at risk of collapse in earthquakes, while landslides remain common across the mountains of Afghanistan.

In 2015, a major earthquake that struck the country’s northeast killed over 200 people in Afghanistan and neighboring northern Pakistan. A similar 6.1 earthquake in 2002 killed about 1,000 people in northern Afghanistan. And in 1998, a 6.1-magnitude earthquake and subsequent tremors in Afghanistan’s remote northeast killed at least 4,500 people.

___

Associated Press writers Rahim Faiez and Munir Ahmed in Islamabad and Jon Gambrell and Isabel DeBre in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top General short headlines
© Copyright 2022 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Yellowstone park reopening after changes wrought by flood
Visitors will return to a changed landscape in Yellowstone National Park on Wednesday as it reopens following record floods that reshaped the park’s rivers and canyons, wiped out numerous roads and left some areas famous for their wildlife viewing inaccessible possibly for months to come
1:07AM ( 57 minutes ago )
Labor shortage compounds federal firefighters' staffing woes
Firefighter groups are applauding steps taken by the Biden administration this week to temporarily raise wages for the men and women on the front lines of the nation’s largest wildfires
1:02AM ( 1 hour ago )
South China floods force tens of thousands to evacuate
Major flooding has forced the evacuation of tens of thousands of people in southern China, with more rain expected
1:01AM ( 1 hour ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Civil jury finds Bill Cosby sexually abused teenager in 1975
Civil trial jurors have found that Bill Cosby sexually abused a 16-year-old girl at the Playboy Mansion in 1975
11:53PM ( 2 hours ago )
Westminster dog show gets 4 finalists, and one has NFL ties
A bloodhound, a French bulldog, a German shepherd and a Maltese have been chosen to advance to the final round of the Westminster Kennel Club dog show
11:11PM ( 2 hours ago )
Takeaways: Trump's conditional loyalty, new warning for left
Donald Trump extended his losing record in Georgia on Tuesday after two Trump-backed U.S. House candidates lost in landslides
11:03PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP National News
Britt wins tumultuous Alabama Senate race scrambled by Trump
Katie Britt has won the Republican nomination for Senate in Alabama, defeating six-term Congressman Mo Brooks in a primary runoff after former President Donald Trump endorsed and then un-endorsed him
10:33PM ( 3 hours ago )
South Dakota AG convicted on 2 impeachment charges, removed
The South Dakota Senate convicted Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg of two impeachment charges stemming from a 2020 fatal accident, removing and barring him from future office
10:28PM ( 3 hours ago )
'Everything is on fire': Ukraine region weathers bombardment
Russian attacks are laying down a curtain of fire across areas of eastern Ukraine where pockets of resistance are denying Moscow full military control of the region
10:11PM ( 3 hours ago )
Top General short headlines
Yellowstone park reopening after changes wrought by flood
Visitors will return to a changed landscape in Yellowstone National Park on Wednesday as it reopens following record floods that reshaped the park’s rivers and canyons, wiped out numerous roads and left some areas famous for their wildlife viewing inaccessible possibly for months to come
1:07AM ( 1 hour ago )
Labor shortage compounds federal firefighters' staffing woes
Firefighter groups are applauding steps taken by the Biden administration this week to temporarily raise wages for the men and women on the front lines of the nation’s largest wildfires
1:02AM ( 1 hour ago )
South China floods force tens of thousands to evacuate
Major flooding has forced the evacuation of tens of thousands of people in southern China, with more rain expected
1:01AM ( 1 hour ago )
Asian shares mostly lower despite Wall St rally; eyes on Fed
Asian shares are mostly lower as markets shrug off a Wall Street rally and await the congressional testimony of Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell
12:27AM ( 1 hour ago )
Yaz, Pederson, Wynns power Giants past Braves 12-10
Mike Yastrzemski broke out of a slump with a go-ahead two-run double in the sixth inning, Joc Pederson and Austin Wynns homered and the San Francisco Giants beat the Atlanta Braves 12-10
12:11AM ( 1 hour ago )