Afghanistan hit by second strong earthquake in days

6.3 magnitude earthquake strikes Herat province days after deadly quakes killed an estimated 1,000 people.

Afghan men search for victims after an earthquake in Zenda Jan district in Herat province, of western Afghanistan
Afghanistan was struck by a deadly earthquake on Saturday that left more than 2,400 people dead [Omid Haqjoo/AP]

A 6.3 magnitude earthquake has struck western Afghanistan, just days after a series of deadly quakes left an estimated 1,000 people dead.

The powerful earthquake struck an area near Herat, the capital of Herat province, early on Wednesday morning, local time.

There are conflicting reports about the number of casualties, with public health minister Qalandar Ebad telling the AFP news agency that at least one person had died.

Al Jazeera’s Mohsin Khan in Kabul said that an earthquake committee spokesperson reported at least 120 injured.

The office of Herat’s governor said there had been “huge losses” in districts near areas that had been flattened by earlier quakes.

At least 80 people have been injured and a landslide has blocked the main Herat-Torghundi highway, The Associated Press reported, quoting Ministry of Information spokesperson Abdul Wahid Rayan.​

The quake also flattened all 700 homes in Chahak village, which was untouched by Saturday’s quake and subsequent tremors, the AP reported.


The latest earthquake comes as Afghans are reeling from a 6.3 magnitude quake​ and subsequent aftershocks that struck the region on Saturday.

Afghan authorities on Wednesday significantly lowered the death toll from the quakes to about 1,000 people, saying logistical difficulties and double counting by rescue agencies had caused confusion.

Taliban officials had earlier reported more than 2,400 deaths.

Rescue workers and volunteers have been working around the clock to try to dig out survivors and bodies from the ruins of the flattened villages since the weekend.

Relief efforts have been hampered by poor infrastructure in the impoverished country following decades of war and a decline in foreign aid.

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies