MOSCOW, September 25 (Itar-Tass) - Russian President Vladimir Putin sent a telegram of condolence to Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif “over numerous casualties after a devastating earthquake in the Pakistani province of Belujistan,” the Russian presidential press service reported on Wednesday.
The Russian President “asked to convey the words of sympathy and support to the families of earthquake’s casualties and the wishes of soonest recovery to injured people.”
According to latest data, the number of victims reached 217 people. An earthquake of magnitude 7.7 hit south-western Pakistani province of Belujistan September 24. Another 350 people received injuries of diverse gravity, as reported on Wednesday by Doon newspaper’s website.
“The city of Avaran was affected the most, as the earthquake’s epicenter was located in 69 km. Emergency was declared in five neighboring districts,” the governor of Belujistan reported.
After the natural disaster, not far from the seaport town of Gvadar in the sea emerged an island around 20,000 meters in area.
There hasn’t been reported any information on Russian citizens affected by the earthquake so far, as reported by Russia’s embassy in Pakistan. “We are currently actively gathering information on this issue,” the Russian diplomatic mission noted.
As eyewitnesses claim, there were at least five massive aftershocks after the earthquake. In the Aravan district, about 80% of buildings have been destroyed. Transport links between towns and settlements are disrupted; transmission facilities are broken. Rescuers say there may be more people under the rubbles.
Local authorities sent several trucks with humanitarian aid to the affected region.
In the past century, Belujistan was massively hit by earthquakes several times. In May 1935, 20 thousand people died as a result of an earthquake. The regional capital – Quetta – was totally destroyed. In November 1945, an earthquake of magnitude года 7.8 claimed lives of 4,000 people.