The Taliban administration has reported a series of powerful earthquakes that struck western Afghanistan, leading to a tragic loss of more than 2,000 lives on Sunday, October 8th.
These seismic events occurred on Saturday morning, primarily affecting the western region of the country, with some tremors also felt in neighboring Iran. According to data from the US Geological Survey (USGS), these earthquakes, one of which measured 6.3 magnitude, originated approximately 35 kilometers northwest of Herat city, causing widespread panic among the local population.
Here is the information available regarding these earthquakes:
The initial earthquake and subsequent strong aftershocks resulted in the loss of 2,053 lives and left another 9,240 individuals injured, as confirmed by a spokesperson for the National Disaster Management Authority.
In Herat province, numerous villages were completely devastated, including at least 600 houses, as verified by the World Health Organization. This catastrophic situation led to an urgent plea for assistance from the Taliban government.
Using X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, the Taliban issued a request for aid, stating, “We appeal to our well-off compatriots to offer any possible cooperation and support to our fellow citizens facing distress.”
Authorities anticipate that the casualty count will rise as search and rescue operations persist in the effort to rescue survivors trapped beneath the debris.
This earthquake ranks among the most devastating to have struck Afghanistan in decades. However, Afghanistan, situated in a region where the Arabian, Indian, and Eurasian tectonic plates converge, has a history of seismic activity.
In 2022, a catastrophic tremor resulted in the loss of over 1,000 lives. Furthermore, years of conflict have left the country with poorly constructed infrastructure, heightening its vulnerability to natural disasters.