Magnitude 7.3 quake hits Iraq, Iran

Magnitude 7.3 earthquake hits Iraq, Iran

Magnitude 7.3 earthquake hits Iraq, Iran

The US Geological Survey put the quake at 7.3 magnitude, which placed the epicentre southwest of the city of Halabja along the Iraq-Iran border.

A strong natural disaster that shook the Iran-Iraq border region yesterday killed at least 13 people, authorities and state media in the two countries said.

Eight villages were reportedly damaged in Iran and at least six people were killed with many others injured in the border town of Qasri Shirin in Iran, Iranian state TV said.

The Washington Post adds that 2 more people have been reported dead thus far in Iran, and the number of dead is expected to rise as recovery operations continue.

There were no immediate reports of injuries or casualties.

Witnesses said buildings being evacuated as they shook violently.

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Iranian provinces in the northwestern, western and central areas of the country were impacted, according to Iranian state TV.

"I thought at first that it was a huge bomb".

There has been no official report from Iraq's government.

Health officials said most of the wounded were in Darbandikhan, 75 kilometres (47 miles) east of the major city of Sulaimaniyah in the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region.

Several aftershocks also jolted the Iranian province of Kermanshah.

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