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At least 13 people dead after earthquake rocks Pakistan and Afghanistan

Rescue workers and people gather at a hospital, where earthquake victims are brought, in Saidu Sharif, a town Pakistan's Swat valley, Tuesday, March 21, 2023
Rescue workers and people gather at a hospital, where earthquake victims are brought, in Saidu Sharif, a town Pakistan's Swat valley, Tuesday, March 21, 2023 Copyright Naveed Ali/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved.
Copyright Naveed Ali/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved.
By Euronews with AFP
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A magnitude 6.5 earthquake was felt across huge swathes of Afghanistan, Pakistan, and parts of India on Tuesday night, forcing people to spend the night outside.

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At least 13 people have been killed and hundreds injured after a magnitude 6.5 earthquake shook huge swathes of Afghanistan and Pakistan on Tuesday evening, leading residents of Kabul to spend the night out in the streets in fear of going back indoors.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) said the quake was centred near Jurm in northeastern Afghanistan and had a depth of 187 kilometres. 

Video footage showed scores of people fleeing their offices and shopping centres when the quake struck. In Afghanistan, many families were out of their homes celebrating Nowruz, the Persian New Year, as the tremors hit. 

"It was a very strong earthquake and everyone came out," said Kabul resident, Masieh. "Everyone was horrified and scared. Everyone was scared of the earthquake in Turkey and hoped something like that wouldn't happen in Kabul. People were horrified and scared," he explained.

Noor Mohammad Hanifi, a shopkeeper in Kabul, set up tents in a street for his family to spend the night in.

"I had tents at home [...] these tents are now being used. One family is mine, the other two families are my neighbours. Their families are also here. They are comfortable."

The region is frequently hit by earthquakes - especially in the Hindu Kush mountain range, which lies near the junction of the Eurasian and Indian tectonic plates.

The earthquake comes nearly two months after the devastating 7.8-magnitude quake struck southeastern Turkey and Syria killing more than 50,000 people.

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