Date
28 May 2017
Volunteers attend to a schoolgirl injured in the 7.5 magnitude earthquake. More than 260 people were killed including 12 Afghan schoolgirls trampled to death in a stampede. Photo: The Independent
Volunteers attend to a schoolgirl injured in the 7.5 magnitude earthquake. More than 260 people were killed including 12 Afghan schoolgirls trampled to death in a stampede. Photo: The Independent

Desperate rescue under way after massive Afghan quake

Rescuers are stepping up efforts to help victims of a massive earthquake which hit remote areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan on Monday.

At least 260 people are dead and many more were injured, BBC News reports.

Rescue teams have been desperately trying to reach remote mountainous areas where the effects of the 7.5 magnitude earthquake are still unclear.

The quake’s focus was deep, reducing its impact.

Victims included 12 Afghan schoolgirls killed in a stampede as they tried to leave their classes.

“They fell under the feet of other students,” a disaster official in the province of Takhar told Reuters.

Afghanistan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah said the earthquake was the strongest felt in the country in recent decades.

The government is working to provide assistance for those affected, he said.

Most of the fatalities so far reported are in northern Pakistan, with at least 214 known casualties.

In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province alone, authorities said at least 179 people were known to have died, and more than 1,800 were injured.

The Pakistan Red Crescent tweeted that its disaster response team had been dispatched to the affected areas.

Pakistan’s information minister said the top priority was to save lives, and the rescue operation would continue “round the clock”, state media reported.

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FL/RA

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