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Earthquake hits near Halabja, felt from Kurdistan to Kuwait, fatalities reported

By Rudaw 12/11/2017
Material damages to a store in Halabja resulted after an earthquake struck on Sunday night. Photo: Osamah Golpy | Rudaw
Material damages to a store in Halabja resulted after an earthquake struck on Sunday night. Photo: Osamah Golpy | Rudaw

4:30 a.m.

High initial casualty reports from Iran's Kurdish provinces

In Iran's heavily Kurdish western provinces, 129 people have been killed and up to 1,000 injured because of Sunday night's earthquake, Iran's ILNA news has reported from its correspondents on the ground.

Most of the destruction occurred in the provinces of Kermanshah and Illam.

Iranian officials in Tehran put the initial death toll at least 61, and more than 300 injured.

Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli emphasized mobilizing "all resources" in a phone call with the governor of Kermanshah, according to ILNA.

Fazli urged all relief organizations to urgently admit and treat patients, while promising to assist the injured.

Iranian Red Crescent workers have been deployed to the affected areas, Iran's state-run news IRNA has reported.

Officials warned of further casualties due to the potentially damaged structures, and the loss of electricity, water, and communications.

Iranian media is describing the event as "the earthquake that shook half of Iran."




1:30 a.m.

Iraqi PM directs civil defense teams to follow up

Iraqi Prime Minister has issued directives to  the country's civil defense teams and related institutions to preserve lives and conduct an extensive follow-up of the effects "of the earthquake that struck the country," according to a statement from his office.

Abadi wished "safety for all."



1:10 a.m.

Deputy PM: Earthquake adds to other crises facing Kurdistan

Qubad Talabani, the deputy prime minister of the Kurdistan Region, wished those affected by the earthquake to be "safe and unharmed."

Talabani is from Sulaimani.




12:50 a.m.

More than 500 injured, 'urgent' medical aid needed

Initial assessments indicate hundreds of people are in need of medical assistance. The Kurdistan Regional Government's Joint Crisis Coordination Center (JCC) has said there is an "urgent" need for medical teams to support local hospitals and treat the injured, it announced on Twitter.


The Kurdistan Region has recently told Baghdad of medical supply shortages.


12:15 a.m. (Monday)

Turkey sends emergency aid To Kurdistan

The Turkish Red Crescent has announced it is sending supplies from warehouses in Adana, Mus and Elazig to Erbil. The aid includes 3,000 tents, 10,000 blankets, a mobile kitchen, 3,000 heaters, and 10,000 beds.

The shipment will be delivered to Erbil and the aid organization will work with its Iraqi and Iranian counterparts.

"Our pioneering teams from Arbil and Silopi warehouses are on their way. We estimate that about 20-30 thousand people are affected by the earthquake," the Turkish Red Crescent quoted the organization's vice president, Dr. Kerem Kinik as saying.


11:55 p.m.

Emergency declared in Sulaimani and Halabja for Monday

Because of the destructive aftermath from the earthquake, Monday has been declared a day off in the provinces of Halabja and Sulaimani.

Local officials informed Rudaw of the decision to close all businesses on Monday.

Both provinces are near the epicenter of Sunday night's earthquake.




11:30 p.m.

Rudaw captures video live as earthquake hit


The guest on the left was in Sulaimani while being interviewed by the host in Erbil.




11:12 p.m.

Hospitals in Kurdistan busy, 4 reported dead in Darbandikhan

Near the epicenter in Darbandikhan, people are being referred to hospitals in Sulaimani city. Four people are reported to have been killed in Darbandikhan, according to local officials. 

“There are no accurate figures because of increasing numbers of the injured. Some peoples’ houses have collapsed. We don’t know whether there were people inside them,” Nasih Mala Hassan, mayor of Darbandikhan said, adding that critical cases have been referred to Sulaimani hospitals.


In Erbil, more than 50 people have been taken to hospitals, according to Rudaw reporters. Some are being treated for injuries, while others fainted from the extended shaking.


Many of the people injured in Erbil are students who live in dormitories, the health department told Rudaw.



10:55 p.m.

Six dead in Kurdish areas of Iran

At least six people were killed as a result of the earthquake in city of Qasri Shirin in east Kurdistan, its mayor told Rudaw.

Tens of others have been injured. Some people are still trapped under rubble.





10:35 p.m.


At least 50 injured in Darbandikhan


HALBJA, Kurdistan Region - An earthquake measuring 7.3 on the Richter scale has shaken people from Kurdistan through Iraq and into Kuwait on Saturday night. At least 50 people were reported to have been injured in Darbandikhan, Sulaimani.

Iqbal Mohammed, spokesperson for the the suburban districts of Darbandikhan told Rudaw nearly 50 people were injured there in the earthquake.

Darbandikhan is located about 35 kilometers southeast of Sulaimani city.

Kawa Ali, Halabja's deputy governor, told Rudaw the earthquake began at 8:33 p.m. local time.

Ali reported no immediate casualties.

He said surrounding areas have felt the tremor.

Halabja borders Kurdish areas of Iraq and Iran. 

The magnitude of the earthquake was 4.5 on the Richter scale, according to the monitoring organization GEOFON. Its epicenter was south of Kirkuk near the border.

A second earthquake was later confirmed to be measured at 8:18 p.m. It measured 7.3 on the Richter scale.

Heavy shaking was felt across the Kurdistan's major cities of Sulaimani, Halabja, Erbil, and Duhok.

People on social media reported tremors across Iraq and into Kuwait.

The same tremor has been reported by Iranian media to have shaken Kurdish areas of Iran or east Kurdistan.

“The earthquake hit western provinces  like Kermanshah and Khuzstan situated on the border with Iraq,” the Iranian earthquake center reported, confirming that the epicenter of the quake was at the Iran-Iraq border.

The nearest city to the quake was Izgli near Kermanshah, Iran.

This is a developing story... First posted at 8:45 p.m.


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Mike Bromley | 12/11/2017
I felt it near Kalar. It was quite strong with a strong horizontal moment.
Nazish mallick | 12/11/2017
JINX | 12/11/2017
a sign to all traitors selling out to persian mullahs.
Suresh | 12/11/2017
Take care
JINX | 12/11/2017
this is what you get for betraying and selling your own people and country. traitor scums. it is called checks and balance. to be continued......

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