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Strong quake hits Iraq-Iran border region

Three Baghdad residents in the streets after a powerful earthquake struck
Image caption Many Baghdad residents left their houses for the streets when the quake struck

A strong 7.2-magnitude earthquake has rattled the northern border region between Iraq and Iran, with several deaths reported.

The quake struck south of the Iraqi town of Halabja at a depth of 33.9km, the US Geological Survey (USGS) said.

At least six people were killed in the Iranian town of Qasr-e Shirin, state media said.

The earthquake sparked panic in the Iraqi capital Baghdad, with residents fleeing their house for the streets.

Mosques in Baghdad and elsewhere in Iraq have been saying prayers through loudspeakers.

Iranian news channel IRINN says rescue teams have been despatched to western parts of the country.

“Damage has been reported in at least eight villages,” Morteza Salim, the head of Iran’s Red Crescent Organisation, told the channel.

“Some other villages have suffered power cuts and their telecommunication system has also been disturbed.”

Kurdish TV also said many people in the autonomous Iraqi Kurdistan region fled their homes when it struck. Local officials cited by Reuters said one person had died and at least 50 people were injured.

BBC News – World

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