Iran Earthquakes Kill 250, Thousands Injured

Posted August 12th, 2012 at 3:15 am (UTC-5)
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Iranian officials say two strong earthquakes in the northwestern part of the country have killed at least 250 people and left more than 2,000 injured.

The 6.4 and 6.3 magnitude quakes struck late Saturday afternoon just 11 minutes apart.

Several villages near the city of Tabriz were leveled, while scores of others sustained serious damage.

Dozens of aftershocks have rumbled through the area, prompting thousands of people to spend the night outdoors. Rescue teams are still searching for victims in collapsed buildings. Officials expect the death toll to rise.

The Red Crescent aid society says it has given emergency shelter to thousands of people and is sending in more supplies.

Earthquakes are common in Iran, but few are significant enough to be noticed. The last major earthquake in Iran was a magnitude 6.6 quake in 2003 in the southeastern city of Bam, where 30,000 of people died.