Earthquake hits Afghanistan and Pakistan, kills 13 and injures over 100

The entire seismically active region has been placed on high alert

March 22, 2023 by Peoples Dispatch
Earthquake deaths Pakistan
(Photo: Express)

At least nine people died and 44 were injured in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province on Tuesday, March 21, following an earthquake whose epicenter, according to the US Geological Survey (USGS), was near Jurm town in Afghanistan’s Hindu Kush region.

In Afghanistan, four people lost their lives and 50 were injured. The USGS estimated that the shock emanated from a depth of 187 km.

According to Reuters, at least 19 houses were damaged in KP due to the impact of the earthquake. Strong tremors were felt in several districts of north Pakistan, including in Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Peshawar, and Abbottabad. The earthquake also triggered landslides in the Swat district, leading to several injuries.

The Express Tribune reported that a statement from Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s office had put the National Disaster Management Authority and other government institutions on alert. An emergency was declared in hospitals in the federal capital Islamabad.

Afghanistan’s Health Ministry also instructed all healthcare facilities to be on standby, said Taliban government spokesperson Zabiullah Mujahid.

Tremors from the quake were felt in several South Asian and Central Asian countries, including in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, India, and Turkmenistan.

The region is seismically active and prone to frequent earthquakes due to the presence of the Chaman geological fault. In June 2022, Afghanistan was hit by a massive earthquake that killed around 1,000 people and injured at least 1,500.