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Morocco earthquake death toll surpasses 600; rescue operation commences

A powerful earthquake in Morocco has claimed the lives of over 600 people, according to figures from the interior ministry. The quake struck suddenly, causing terrified residents to flee their homes in the middle of the night, as reported by TRT World.

As the US Geological Survey reported, a 6.8-magnitude earthquake hit 72 kilometres (45 miles) southwest of the popular tourist destination Marrakesh at 11:11 pm (2211 GMT).

However, the Moroccan Ministry of Interior announced on Saturday that a minimum of 296 people had been killed, and 153 others were injured due to this earthquake. Health authorities also called on the public to donate blood to help the victims. They added that most fatalities occurred in mountainous areas that were difficult to access, and rescue teams faced challenges reaching the worst-hit areas due to damaged roads.

The Moroccan army said on social media platform X: “We remind you to take precautions
and follow safety measures due to the risk of aftershocks.”

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) located the earthquake’s epicentre 72 kilometres southwest of the historic city of Morocco and reported its magnitude as 8.6 on the Richter scale.

The earthquake’s epicentre is in a remote mountainous region, and residents have told reporters that many buildings have been destroyed or damaged.


Some residents of Marrakech, one of Morocco’s historic imperial cities listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, have also reported that the earthquake has caused damage in their city.

Meanwhile, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) has described Friday night’s earthquake in Morocco as “unusually strong.”