Morocco devastated by earthquake, death toll rises to 820

Morocco devastated by earthquake

Morocco has been rocked by the deadliest earthquake ever. A large area of the country has been turned into ruins by this powerful earthquake yesterday. Officials of the country said on Saturday that they have confirmed the death of at least 820 people in the earthquake.

Marrakesh, the southwestern city of Morocco, is known as one of the country’s tourist centers. An earthquake was felt in Marrakesh and its surrounding areas yesterday at 11:11 p.m. local time. The United States Geological Survey said the magnitude of the earthquake was 6.8.

The earthquake originated in a mountainous area 72 km from Marrakesh. In addition to Marrakesh, strong tremors were felt in the nearby coastal cities of Rabat, Casablanca, and Essaouira.

A 33-year-old resident of Marrakesh, Abdel Haque El Amrani, said, “Suddenly when a big tremor started, I realized it was an earthquake.” I saw the buildings swaying. Then I went down to the house. After going down, I saw that almost everyone was scared. The children are crying.
Morocco has never experienced such a strong earthquake before. Meanwhile, an earthquake expert claims that this is the strongest earthquake in the region in more than 12 years.

Bill McGuire, an emeritus professor at Britain’s University College London, told AFP that buildings are not built strong enough in areas where destructive earthquakes do not occur. Due to this, the buildings collapsed in the earthquake and many casualties occurred.

This afternoon, Morocco’s Interior Ministry gave an update on the number of victims of the earthquake. It can be seen that 820 people have died in the earthquake so far. More than a third of those killed were from Al-Haus and Tarodant provinces, where the quake originated.

According to the Ministry of Home Affairs, out of 672 people injured in the earthquake, 205 people are in critical condition.

‘Unbearable’ cries

Engineer Faisal Baddor said the building he was in felt three earthquakes. It seemed like a high-speed train was passing by our building.

Michael Bijet, 43, a resident of Marrakesh, was preparing to sleep when the earthquake struck. He said, “I thought the bed would fly away.” Scared, I went downstairs without clothes. After a while, I saw that the entire building was destroyed. It is truly a catastrophe.’

Another resident of Marrakesh is Faisal Badour. He told AFP he was driving when the earthquake struck. If the earthquake is felt, stop the car. I just thought it was a big disaster. I started crying and wailing unbearably.

Ruined-separated township

Marrakesh and its surrounding areas have been devastated by a powerful earthquake. Big buildings collapsed. Bodies are being taken out from the destroyed building. The Ministry of Home Affairs said that all the concerned authorities are trying their best for the rescue work in the affected areas.

Regional voluntary blood donation organizations have urged local residents to donate blood to earthquake victims. Meanwhile, as a result of the earthquake, the power supply system in Marrakesh has been disrupted. Internet services are almost down due to a lack of electricity.

Leaders of various countries in the United States, Europe, and the Middle East expressed their condolences to Morocco in the wake of the deadly earthquake. The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) also expressed condolences.

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