Pakistan News Service

Wednesday Apr 16, 2014, Jumada-al-thani 15, 1435 Hijri
Logo Logo
LATEST :
Pakistan News Home -> Top -> News Details

Thousands of Pakistanis affected by Iran quake

18 April, 2013

  Related News  
Another powerful 7.2-magnitude quake hits Awaran, 22 killed
Earthquake of 4.7 magnitude jolts parts of KP; quake toll hits 400
  Related Articles  
Mass Migration-Apprehensions And Hopes
By Amir Latif
The Quake that could Crack LoC
By Farzana Shah
  Related Speakout  
Disaster
  More on this View All
  Related News Poll

MASHKAIL: Thousands of Pakistanis have been affected by a huge earthquake in Iran that damaged hundreds of homes and killed at least 41 people, sparking a military rescue effort in the remote region.

The United States also offered aid after the 7.8-magnitude quake, Iran's most powerful in five decades, damaged an estimated 2,000 mud-built homes of Mashkail, a town in Balochistan.

Tuesday's earthquake was felt across the region and though the epicentre lay in southeast Iran, all but one of the deaths reported so far have been across the border in Pakistan.

Efforts to help the survivors have been hampered by Mashkail's remote location – communities are scattered, there are no paved roads, no electricity and limited mobile phone coverage, and no proper medical facilities.

Only three tents were visible in the town and frightened families prepared to spend a second night out in the open, sheltering under trees, an AFP reporter said, too scared to return to their homes for fear of aftershocks.

A 5.7-magnitude tremor early on Wednesday frayed nerves even further. The National Disaster Management Authority said 105 injured people had been treated.

Esa Tahir, a local coordinator for the charity Islamic Relief, said that after surveying two local councils in Mashkail, 5,000 people have been affected and around 2,000 mud homes damaged or destroyed, along with 150 shops.

At least five government buildings, including administrative and revenue offices, a school and a hospital, were also damaged, an AFP reporter said.

Eight injured people, including four young children from the same family, were waiting for a helicopter to fly them to Quetta.

A helicopter came but could not land due to a dust storm, a military officer said, adding that they would be evacuated today (Thursday).

Some 15 to 20 people made the bone-shaking, 45-minute journey across bare ground to the Iranian border to reach a hospital and see a doctor, according to Frontier Constabulary officials.

While some survivors offered prayers for the dead, others dug through rubble with spades and even knives to try to recover their belongings. "We often feel tremors here, but this was the worst I've ever seen in my life. I thought a bulldozer was passing by close to my house," Abdul Ghaffour, who is about 50, told AFP. "Thank God my family and I are safe."

Major General Obaidullah Khattak of the Frontier Corps, another paramilitary force, said 16 badly injured people had been taken by helicopter to Quetta for treatment and nine doctors were on the scene.

The area's scattered population made determining the death toll difficult, but Frontier Corps' Major Attiq Minhas told AFP at Dalbandin airport that at least 40 people had died.

On the Iranian side of the border, one woman was reported killed by falling rocks and the Red Crescent rushed 400 tents to shelter some 1,700 people who lost their homes in the quake.

Putting aside America's longstanding enmity with Iran, and its more recent strains in relations with Pakistan, US Secretary of State John Kerry offered condolences and assistance with relief work.

Disaster relief contributed to an earlier thaw in relations between the United States and Iran, which accepted US personnel following the Bam earthquake in 2003, which killed more than 26,000 people. The United States has also engaged in disaster diplomacy with Pakistan, briefly improving its abysmal image in the country following a 2005 earthquake in Kashmir, where more than 73,000 died.

United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon also expressed condolences after Tuesday's disaster and said the UN too stood ready to help if needed.

End.

 What do you think about the story ? Leave your comments!

Heading (Optional)
Your Comments: *

Your Name:*
E-mail (Optional):
City (Optional):
Country (Optional):
 
 
Field marked(*) are mandatory.
Note. The PakTribune will publish as many comments as possible but cannot guarantee publication of all. PakTribune keeps its rights reserved to edit the comments for reasons of clarity, brevity and morality. The external links like http:// https:// etc... are not allowed for the time being to be posted inside comments to discourage spammers.

  Speak Out View All
Artilce 6 and Musharraf Trail
Blocking Nato supply line
  Quick Vote Show Results
Question: "In view of the current situation do you think Talks with Taliban should take place only within the ambit of Article 4 of Objectives Resolution that defines our Common Purpose i.e. PM/ President down to all Pakistanis to work till we achieve the rights of Democracy, Freedom, Tolerance and Social Justice for all Pakistanis:"
Yes
No
 
Candid Corner
Exclusive by
Lt. Col. Riaz Jafri (Retd)
CIA's Pakistan drone strikes carried out by regular US air force personnel
Medical report finds NAB official committed suicide
Suggested Sites