6.1 magnitude earthquake rocks Afghanistan and Pakistan

A 6.1 magnitude earthquake shook parts of densely populated Afghanistan and Pakistan on Wednesday morning, the US Geological Survey (USGS) said, with Afghan officials saying casualties were feared. The quake struck about 44 km (27 miles) from the city of Khost in southeastern Afghanistan. at a depth of 51 km, according to the USGS.

The head of the Taliban administration’s natural disaster ministry, Mohammad Nassim Haqqani, said they would provide an update once they have completed further investigation, but he believes there have been casualties . “According to our first information, the earthquake caused casualties and damage, we are investigating,” he said. There were no immediate reports of damage or fatalities in Pakistan.

Tremors were felt over some 500 km by around 119 million people in Pakistan, Afghanistan and India, the European Mediterranean Seismological Center (EMSC) said in a tweet. It was felt in the Afghan capital, Kabul, as well as the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, according to testimonies posted on the EMSC website and on Twitter. “Strong, long shaking,” a witness told EMSC from Kabul. “It was loud,” another witness said from Peshawar in northwestern Pakistan.

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