Afghanistan faces disastrous 6.1 magnitude earthquake, over 1000 died

The Taliban government in Afghanistan have urged support from international nations as the nation deals with the after-effects of a disastrous 6.1 magnitude earthquake that hit the country on Wednesday, 22 June.

The Taliban government in Afghanistan have urged support from international nations as the nation deals with the after-effects of a disastrous 6.1 magnitude earthquake that hit the country on Wednesday, 22 June.

Over 1000 people have lost their lives, and more than 1500 are severely injured. Several are still buried under the ruined mud-built homes.

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Southeastern Paktika province was the worst hit, and the United Nations is speeding to provide emergency shelter and food help. Rescue efforts are being hindered due to heavy rain and a lack of resources.

Rescuers and survivors have said that villages are completely destroyed around the epicentre of the earthquake.

This is the deadliest earthquake to hit the nation in two decades and is a major challenge for the recent Taliban government, the Islamist movement which came back in power last year after the Western-backed government crumpled.

The earthquake hit around 44km (27 miles) from the city of Khost, and its tremors were felt even as far away as Pakistan and India.

Afghanistan is amid a humanitarian and economic crisis and a senior Taliban official, Abdul Qahar Balkhi, stated the government is financially incapable of assisting the people to the extent that is required.

He further added that aid agencies, neighbouring nations and world powers were helping, but the assistance required to be extended to a much larger scale as it was a devastating earthquake which has not been experienced in many years.

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António Guterres, the head of the UN, stated that the agency had ‘fully mobilized’ over this disaster. Medical supplies, Health teams, food and emergency shelters were sent to the quake site, said the UN officials.

During the last decade, over 7000 people have been killed due to earthquakes in Afghanistan, reports the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. The nation has reported 560 deaths every year due to earthquakes.

This little child is the only remaining alive member of her family. Locals say they couldn’t find any other member of her family.

Tariq Saeed

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