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International News: Nepal earthquake kills more than 150 in west of country

Posted: Saturday, November 4, 2023. 2:45 pm CST.

Photo Credit: BBC News

By Aaron Humes: More than 150 people have been killed and about 375 people have been injured after an earthquake struck remote western Nepal on Friday, the BBC reports.

The earthquake was recorded just before midnight local time, according to Nepal’s Monitoring and Research Centre. The U.S. Geological Survey measured the earthquake at a magnitude of 5.6 and said it was a shallow earthquake, meaning it happened closer to the earth’s surface.

Security forces have been deployed to help rescue efforts in the rugged districts of Jajarkot and West Rukum, 310 miles west of Kathmandu.

Strong tremors were felt far away in the Nepalese capital and in cities in neighboring India, including Delhi. Three more tremors were felt within an hour of the quake. Local authorities urged people to stay outside for at least 24 hours as minor aftershocks are being reported in the areas.

Video footage on local media showed crumbled facades of multi-storied brick houses. People were pictured digging through rubble in the dark to pull survivors from the remains of collapsed buildings in posts on social media.

Unicef Nepal said that they were assessing the damage and the toll of the disaster on children and families.

Nepal’s Prime Minister, Pushpa Kamal Dahal, arrived in the affected region on Saturday, after expressing his “deep sorrow” at the loss of life and property wrought by the quake, on social media platform X. He said he had ordered security agencies to immediately launch rescue and relief operations.

A cabinet meeting on Sunday is expected to decide whether to accept foreign assistance for relief and rescue. Officials said many countries, including Nepal’s neighbors China and India, had offered humanitarian help.

Search and rescue operations are being hampered by roads becoming blocked by landslides that were triggered by the quake. Local government officials, police, and army have been deployed for rescue operations, as there are still bodies left to be recovered from the rubble.

 

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