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UPDATE - At least 2 dead, 122 injured as 5.9-magnitude earthquake strikes northwestern Iran

UPDATE - At least 2 dead, 122 injured as 5.9-magnitude earthquake strikes northwestern Iran
Iran, located in seismically active zone, has seen multiple earthquakes in recent months


By Syed Zafar Mehdi

TEHRAN (AA) - A 5.9-magnitude earthquake left at least two people dead Saturday in Iran's northwestern province of West Azerbaijan, according to emergency officials.

A total of 122 others were injured in the quake, said Mojtaba Khaledi, spokesman for Iran's Emergency Organization.

The quake was reported at around 9.44 p.m. local time at a depth of 7 kilometers (4.34 miles), with the epicenter near Khoy.

According to officials and media reports, the high-intensity quake was felt in multiple cities, including the provincial capital and largest city Urmia, with multiple aftershocks.

Earlier, Khaledi told state television that preliminary reports suggested damage in Khoy as a result of the quake, adding that ambulances have been dispatched from nearby cities of Urmia and Tabriz.

Teams of the Red Crescent Society in the province, which borders Azerbaijan, have also been dispatched to the worst-hit areas to assess the damage, said officials.

Governor of Khoy, Zabihullah Kazemi, told the state news agency that 15 teams have been sent to the quake-hit areas to assess the extent of damage and provide relief.

The province was jolted by a 5.4-magnitude tremor earlier this month, which shook Khoy and caused extensive damage to properties.

A 5.4-magnitude quake in Khoy injured nearly 400 people in October and partially or fully damaged hundreds of urban and rural residential properties.

Iran is located in a seismically active zone and has seen many catastrophic earthquakes in the past years.

The most devastating earthquake to hit the country in recent history came in 2013 when at least 34,000 people died in the city of Bam in southeastern Kerman province. The quake measured 6.7 on the Richter scale.

In recent months, a string of high and medium-intensity earthquakes have hit provinces in southern and northern Iran.

*Zehra Nur Duz contributed to the story in Ankara.

source: News Feed
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