- Powerful quake struck early in the morning near the town of Khost south of the capital Kabul
- Rescue teams were being helicoptered into the stricken areas
- At least 155 people were killed in the Barmala, Ziruk, Naka and Gayan
Afghanistan: An earthquake struck eastern Afghanistan early Wednesday, killing at least 155 people, authorities said. Information remained scarce on the magnitude 6 temblor that struck Paktika province. The state-run Bakhtar news agency reported the detall and said rescuers were arriving by helicopter.
“A severe earthquake shook four districts of Paktika province, killing and injuring hundreds of our countrymen and destroying dozens of houses,” Bilal Karimi, a deputy spokesman for the Taliban government, wrote on Twitter. “We urge all aid agencies to send teams to the area immediately to prevent further catastrophe.”
Neighboring Pakistan’s Meteorological Department put the earthquake at a magnitude 6.1. Tremors were felt in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, and elsewhere in the eastern Punjab province. The European seismological agency, EMSC, said the earthquake’s tremors were felt over 500 kilometers (310 miles) by 119 million people across Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.