A little after midnight in the mountainous area some 22 miles away from the city of Ferghana in Uzbekistan, some 200,000 residents were shaken by a 6.2 earthquake. The powerful tremor took the lives of thirteen people and injured more than 86 people. Of the injured, 35 have been hospitalized, some having serious injures.
Officials said a number of residential buildings in several towns in the Ferghana Province have been damaged, but they did not specify the extent of the earthquake’s impact.
Uzbek President Islam Karimov has given instructions for emergency workers to take prompt action to mitigate the fallout from the quake and provide assistance to victims, a government statement said.
“Local authorities are carrying out the work needed to assist the population affected by the earthquake and have taken on the burden of the costs of organizing and carrying out the burial of victims,” the Emergency Services Ministry said.
Although the epicenter was in Kyrgyzstan, there have so far been no reports of any deaths there. Kanat Abdrakhmatov, head of the National Academy of Science’s seismology institute, said the epicenter was in a sparsely inhabited area of Kyrgyzstan and that only a few buildings appear to have been damaged.
Although earthquakes are relatively common for this area of the former Soviet Central Asia, this was a significant quake that claimed lives with its destruction. In 2008, a similar 6.6 earthquake struck the Kyrgyzstan’s border and claimed the lives of 74 people.
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