Afghanistan hit by second 6.3-magnitude earthquake in five days

North-western province of Herat, where thousands died in Saturday's quake, again at the epicentre

Afghan earthquake survivors struggle with living conditions

Afghan earthquake survivors struggle with living conditions
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Afghanistan was rocked by a powerful earthquake on Wednesday morning – days after another quake in the same area killed thousands and flattened villages.

The latest 6.3-magnitude earthquake struck about 28km outside the city of Herat, capital of the north-western province of the same name, the US Geological Survey said.

Initial reports suggest nobody died in the incident, which occurred at about 5.10am local time, but dozens were injured and hundreds more homes damaged.

It triggered a landslide that blocked the main Herat-Torghondi highway, Information Ministry spokesman Abdul Wahid Rayan said.

Taliban officials said more than 2,000 died across Herat in Saturday's quake, which also measured at 6.3 magnitude.

They subsequently said thousands were killed and injured, but didn't give a breakdown of casualties.

Saturday's epicentre was about 40km north-west of the city of Herat.

Several of the aftershocks were strong, including one on Monday that again caused the city's residents to rush out of their homes.

Nearly 2,000 houses in 20 villages were destroyed in Saturday's quake, the Taliban has said. The area has just one government-run hospital.

These earthquakes, together with the approach of winter, will exacerbate Afghanistan's existing challenges and make it even harder for people to meet basic needs, including adequate shelter, food and medicine, aid groups have warned.

UAE delivers support

The UAE on Tuesday sent an aircraft carrying 33 tonnes of food supplies to help those affected by Saturday's earthquake.

Aid was delivered through a number of Emirati humanitarian organisations, including the Emirates Red Crescent, the Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Charitable and Humanitarian Foundation, and the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation, in co-ordination with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“This urgent relief shipment of food supplies, sent as part of a collaboration between the UAE's humanitarian and charity organisations, is in line with our efforts to provide urgent supplies to other countries during times of crisis, especially natural disasters,” said Sultan Al Shamsi, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for Development and International Organisations Affairs.

“Such crises result in significant shortages of food and medical supplies, and require a rapid response to support affected people, especially women, children and the elderly.”

Updated: October 11, 2023, 1:12 PM