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Death toll in Iran-Iraq earthquake tops 400, state media says

November 13, 2017 at 9:59 AM

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A 7.3-magnitude earthquake struck near the Iran-Iraq border on Nov. 12, leaving more than 400 dead and injuring nearly 7,000 others. (Joyce Lee/The Washington Post)

BEIRUT — The death toll in a powerful earthquake that jolted the Iran-Iraq border on Sunday night has risen to more than 400, according to Iranian state media reports, and it was expected to climb further.

A spokesman for Iran's crisis management headquarters told state TV on Monday that 407 people were killed and 7,156 were injured, mainly in the country's western provinces, after a ­7.3-magnitude earthquake struck the Iraqi side of the border. It sent seismic shock waves as far as Lebanon, Israel and Turkey. Seven people were killed in Iraq, officials there said.

The majority of the casualties appeared to be in Iran's Kermanshah province, which borders Iraq. Videos and images from the town of Sarpol-e Zahab, about 10 miles from the border, showed partially collapsed buildings and residents wrapped in blankets in the streets. One photograph distributed by state media showed a woman clutching what appeared to be a dead child covered in a white shroud.

According to local media reports, emergency personnel worked through the night to rescue victims from the rubble. Power outages were reported across western Iran, which is home to some of the country's poorest regions.

In Iraq, the Health Ministry said seven people died and 535 were injured, with the damage and casualties concentrated in the northern Kurdish region.

Residents huddle by a fire in an open area following a 7.3-magnitude earthquake at Sarpol-e Zahab in Iran’s Kermanshah province.
A car lays smashed by debris from the earthquake at the city of Sarpol-e-Zahab.
A man takes a picture on the rubble of a destroyed structure near Darbandikhan Lake after an earthquake, in the city of Darbandikhan, in northern Iraq.
A man checks the interior of a damaged house after an earthquake in the city of Darbandikhan.
People sit on the rubble of a destroyed house after an earthquake in Darbandikhan.
People sit on the roof of a destroyed house in Darbandikhan.
Boys walk on the roof of a destroyed house in the city of Darbandikhan, northern Iraq.
Relatives weep over the bodies of earthquake victims, in Sarpol-e-Zahab, in western Iran.
People carry their belongings in Sarpol-e-Zahab, western Iran.
Rocks are seen on the road near the Darbandikhan Dam, close to the city of Sulaimaniyah, in the semiautonomous Kurdistan region of Iraq.
Iranian victims of the earthquake search for belongings in a damaged building in the city of Pole-Zahab in Kermanshah province, Iran.
Residents look at damage in Sarpol-e Zahab in Iran’s western province of Kermanshah.
Mandatory Credit: Photo by ABEDIN TAHERKENAREH/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock (9220738z) Iranian victims of the earthquake look for their belongings around the wreckage of their home in the city of Pole-Zahab in Kermanshah Province, Iran, 13 November 2017. A powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck Iran's Kermanshah province bordering Iraq has killed over 328 inhabitants and left at least another 3,950 injured, Iranian authorities said. 7.2 magnitude earthquake hits region along the border between Iran and Iraq, Pole-Zahab, Iran (Islamic Republic Of) - 13 Nov 2017
A wounded woman lies on a bed as she is evacuated from the area in Sarpol-e Zahab County in Kermanshah province, Iran.
Products lie on the ground in a market in Darbandikhan, near the city of Sulaimaniyah, in the semiautonomous Kurdistan region of Iraq.
Iranian victims of the earthquake mourn around the wreckage of their home in the city of Pole-Zahab in Kermanshah Province, Iran.
A boy looks at a damaged building in the town of Darbandikhan, near the city of Sulaimaniyah, in the semiautonomous Kurdistan region of Iraq.
An Iraqi Kurdish man walks by a large rock that fell from the top of a mountain during the earthquake that hit Darbandikhan town, near Sulaymaniya city, northern Iraq.
A wounded boy is treated in Sarpol-e Zahab County in Kermanshah, Iran.
Men tend to an injured woman in Sarpol-e Zahab County in Kermanshah, Iran.
An Iraqi Kurdish firefighter operates near a destroyed building at Darbandikhan town, near Sulaymaniya city, northern Iraq.
Iranian rescuers search the wreckage of a building in the city of Pole-Zahab in Kermanshah Province, Iran.
Photo Gallery: More than 300 people have been killed and nearly 4,000 wounded after a 7.3 magnitude earthquake struck the Iraqi side of the border.

"Some of the old buildings fell apart and injured more than 60 people," said Mulla Nasih Hassan, mayor of Darbandikhan, near the Iranian border. He said some of the injured were in critical condition and had been moved to hospitals in the city of Sulaymaniyah.

"Almost all the people of Darbandikhan spent the night outside in the open, fearing another quake," Hassan said.

Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, expressed condolences Monday and ordered government agencies, including the military and the Revolutionary Guard Corps, to assist with rescue and humanitarian efforts.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani also dispatched a delegation led by the interior minister to assess the damage in Kermanshah, about 250 miles from the capital, Tehran. He was expected to visit affected areas on Tuesday, the Associated Press reported.

Iran sits atop major fault lines and has suffered devastating earthquakes. In 2003, the historic city of Bam, in southeastern Iran, was destroyed by an earthquake that killed more than 26,000 people.

Mustafa Salim in Baghdad contributed to this report.

Read more:

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Erin Cunningham is an Istanbul-based correspondent for The Washington Post, covering conflict and political turmoil across the Middle East. She previously was a correspondent at the paper's bureau in Cairo, and has reported on wars in Afghanistan, Gaza, Libya and Iraq.

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Middle East

Death toll in Iran-Iraq earthquake tops 400, state media says

November 13, 2017 at 9:59 AM

Watch more!
A 7.3-magnitude earthquake struck near the Iran-Iraq border on Nov. 12, leaving more than 400 dead and injuring nearly 7,000 others. (Joyce Lee/The Washington Post)

BEIRUT — The death toll in a powerful earthquake that jolted the Iran-Iraq border on Sunday night has risen to more than 400, according to Iranian state media reports, and it was expected to climb further.

A spokesman for Iran's crisis management headquarters told state TV on Monday that 407 people were killed and 7,156 were injured, mainly in the country's western provinces, after a ­7.3-magnitude earthquake struck the Iraqi side of the border. It sent seismic shock waves as far as Lebanon, Israel and Turkey. Seven people were killed in Iraq, officials there said.

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