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Late night 6.2 magnitude earthquake rattle Pakistan capital, Afghanistan

Last night 6.2 magnitude earthquake struck north-east Afghanistan near the country’s borders with Pakistan and Tajikistan, according to the US Geological Survey. 

ISLAMABAD (AP): A Pakistani official says that a strong earthquake struck the region, rattling buildings and forcing sleeping residents in the capital, Islamabad, out of their homes.

Ghulam Rasool told The Associated press Friday that the magnitude 6.9 was centered in Tajikistan near the Afghan border and latest for 59 seconds. However the U.S. Geological Survey reported that the quake measured at magnitude 6.2 and was centered in the Hindu Kush region of Afghanistan. Twitter users in the Afghan capital, Kabul, reported feeling the tremors there as well.

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The quake, which measured 203.5 kilometres deep, struck about 280 kilometres north-east of the Afghan capital Kabul at 11:44 pm, the USGS said on its website.

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A strong earthquake shook parts of Pakistan and Afghanistan, rattling buildings and forcing sleeping residents out of their homes. More than 30 people were injured as houses or walls collapsed in the northwestern Pakistan city of Peshawar, said emergency rescue service spokesman Bilal Ahmad Faizi. A total of 41 people were taken to hospital in the city, according to doctors are rescue officials.

Hamid Nawaz, the head of Pakistan’s disaster management authority, said they were still assessing damage. He confirmed that some old homes and walls collapsed in Peshawar, but he refused to share further details.

Some people panicked and ran out of their homes in New Delhi and other parts of northern India. But there were no immediate reports of fatalities or major property damage, the Press Trust of India news agency reported.

The quake was also felt in the Kashmir region. In Pakistan’s capital, Islamabad, some residents remained outside their homes despite the chilly winter weather, fearful of aftershocks.

Sahiba Khan, an 18-year-old student, said she was reading when earthquake jolted her home. All of her family members emerged, reciting verses from the Quran.

There were no immediate reports of casualties or extensive damage.

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