Iran General NewsIran ends rescue effort after Bushehr earthquake kills 37...

Iran ends rescue effort after Bushehr earthquake kills 37 people

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Bloomberg: Iran stopped its rescue efforts as the death toll rose to 37 after a 6.1 earthquake struck Bushehr province, home to a nuclear plant, state media said. Bloomberg

By Ladane Nasseri & Yeganeh Salehi

Iran stopped its rescue efforts as the death toll rose to 37 after a 6.1 earthquake struck Bushehr province, home to a nuclear plant, state media said.

More than 850 people were injured yesterday when the quake hit the town of Kaki, 160 kilometers (100 miles) from the plant, and about 800 houses were flattened or partially destroyed, state television reported today. Iran announced three days of mourning in the southern province on the Persian Gulf.

“Rescue operations have ended, there is no one else left under the rubble,” Mahmoud Mozafar, head of relief and rescue at Iran’s Red Crescent Society, was cited as saying by the Fars state-run news agency. “Relief operations in other areas are ongoing.”

The Iranian government has set up tents for about 1,000 people and is distributing food to the survivors, Mozafar told state television. Power and phone communications are still cut in the area, Bushehr Governor Fereydoun Hasanvand told the Iranian Students News Agency.

The Bushehr nuclear power plant — the country’s only operational one — is safe, Iranian officials said yesterday.

According to the Iranian Seismological Center, the quake hit yesterday at 4:22 p.m. local time and was followed by at least four aftershocks, Press TV said yesterday. The region was again struck by a 5.6 magnitude earthquake early today, the U.S. Geological Survey reported on its website.

Iran sits on several fault lines and is frequently hit by earthquakes. An estimated 40,000 people were killed in 2003 when a temblor flattened the city of Bam in the southern province of Kerman.

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