A devastating earthquake measuring 6.3 on the Richter scale has recently hit a densely populated area near Herat, Afghanistan’s fourth largest city.
The earthquake, which struck on Saturday, has claimed the lives of at least 2,000 people, according to a spokesperson for the Taliban government.
This makes it one of the deadliest earthquakes to have hit Afghanistan in the past two decades.
The figures provided by the spokesperson have not been independently verified, but if true, the death toll would exceed that of the eastern Afghanistan earthquake that occurred in June 2022, which killed at least 1,000 people.
The US Geological Survey has reported that the epicentre of the earthquake was located approximately 40 kilometres northwest of Herat city and was followed by several strong aftershocks, including one measuring 6.3, one measuring 5.9, and one measuring 5.5, as well as several weaker aftershocks.
On Sunday, people tried to rescue the dead and injured in Herat, climbing over debris and rocks. Survivors and victims were trapped under collapsed buildings, covered in dust.