Pakistan earthquake kills 20 in Balochistan province


At least 20 people have been killed after an earthquake struck Pakistan’s southern Balochistan province early on Thursday, said officials.

Authorities say the death toll may increase, and that many people were killed when structures collapsed.

Many of the dead were women and children.

The US Geological Survey said it was a 5.9 magnitude quake that struck at a shallow depth of 9km. shallow quakes can cause more damage.

Local officials said that at least 150 others are thought to have been injured, with several of them rushed to hospital in critical condition.

Rescue operations are under way, and military doctors and paramedics have reached earthquake hit areas to assist with relief efforts.

A number of critically injured people were air-evacuated to the provincial capital Quetta in Pakistan army helicopters.

Some people were treated on stretchers with medics using phones as torches.

More than 100 mud houses have collapsed and a large number of buildings were damaged, leaving hundreds of people homeless, said an official.

“I have ordered immediate assistance on an emergency basis for the Harnai, Balochistan, earthquake victims & for an immediate assessment of the damage for timely relief & compensation,” said Prime Minister Imran Khan, sending condolences via Twitter.

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