Afghan floods and quake kill 14 people

2013-04-24 14:01
People evacuate buildings and call their relatives after a tremor of an earthquake was felt in Karachi, Pakistan. (File, AP)

People evacuate buildings and call their relatives after a tremor of an earthquake was felt in Karachi, Pakistan. (File, AP)

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IKabul — Flash floods in northern Afghanistan killed at least 13 people, and an earthquake that struck the northeast and neighbouring Pakistan on Wednesday left one person dead and 34 injured, officials said.

The flooding occurred on Tuesday in three remote districts of Balkh province: Kishindih, Sholgara and Nahri Shai, said provincial police chief Shir Jan Durani. Five people were reported missing in the area, where many homes were damaged and livestock drowned, he said.

The quake struck the Hindu Kush mountains in Nangarhar province, and at least 1 child was killed and 34 people were injured, said the provincial governor's spokesperson, Ahmad Zia Abdulzai.

The US Geological Survey said the epicentre of the magnitude-5.7 earthquake was 11km south of Mehterlam, the capital of Laghman province.

The temblor had a depth of 66km, the geological survey said. It was felt in Kabul, many parts of eastern Afghanistan, and as far away as Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan. There were some reports of minor damage in Jalalabad, the capital of Nangarhar province.

Earthquakes are common in northeastern Afghanistan, and many occur in the Hindu Kush and broader region as a result of the collision of the India and Eurasia continental plates.

In the flooding, Rahmatullah Zahid, a local official in Balkh province, said seven people died in Sholgara and at least six in Kishindih.

Many homes in rural Afghanistan are built of mud or stone and are easily washed away by flooding.

The United Nations, which helps co-ordinate disaster relief, said it was preparing its report on the damage but didn't immediately have details.

Northern Afghanistan has experienced an unusually wet winter, with heavy snowfalls and rains.

Dozens of people died of flooding last spring in northern Afghanistan.

Read more on:    pakistan  |  afghanistan  |  floods  |  earthquakes

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