Quake in Iran claims lives in Pakistan

Cities in the Gulf and South Asia shaken as magnitude 7 . 8 earthquake strikes Iranian province adjoining Pakistan

A powerful earthquake centred on a border area of southeast Iran has killed at least 34 people and injured 80 others in neighbouring Pakistan , reports say .

The earthquake on Tuesday, measured at 7. 8 magnitude and described as the strongest to hit Iran in more than half a century, shook buildings from the Gulf to
South Asia .

Al Jazeera's correspondent Imtiaz Tyab, reporting from the Pakistani port city of Karachi , said despite the earthquake
being centred in Iran, Pakistan had borne the brunt of the impact. Residents of the Mashkail village in Washuk district, around 3 km from the
border with Iran , were particularly affected by the tremor , he said . " The earthquake was so powerful that itwas felt in the southern city of Karachi , even damaging a few buildings in the country's commercial hub . " At least 27 people were hurt in Iran as a
result of Tuesday's earthquake , according to a local governor speaking to the official IRNA news agency , but there was no
immediate confirmation of any deaths . An earlier report said up to 46 people had been killed in Iran, but an Iranian provincial governor told the ISNA agency
later there had been no deaths .
" Fortunately, the earthquake resulted in no fatalities, " Hatam Narouyi, governor of Sistan -Baluchestan, said .

The deputy head of Iran' s state crisis management organisation , Morteza Akbarpour, told Fars news agency that casualties should be low considering the rural setting of the stricken area. IRNA said crisis management authorities
had declared a state of emergency in
the area.

The head of Iran's Red Crescent rescue corps, Mahmoud Mozafar , said communications to the stricken areas had
been cut. Felt across Gulf The earthquake also shook buildings in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, across the waters of the Gulf in the United Arab Emirates.

It was also felt in the Saudi capital Riyadh and in Oman.
In the tourist hub of Dubai, residential and office buildings were evacuated and thousands of people gathered outside

The US Geological Survey put the
magnitude of the quake at 7 . 8 , and said it struck near the Iranian city of Khash , in Sistan -Baluchestan. David Rothery , chair of the volcanoes,
earthquakes and tsunamis course at

Britain's Open University, said " this morning's earthquake in Iran
was strong .. . but fortunately its source was quite deep " .
Last week, a 6 .3 magnitude earthquake also hit Iran killing at least 37 people and injuring 850 more in the country 's southwest . In December 2003, a big earthquake struck the southern city of Bam . It killed 31, 000 people - about a quarter of
the population - and destroyed the city's ancient mud-built citadel.

(C)Aljazeera English

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