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Morocco Devastated as Powerful Earthquake Claims Over 800 Lives

Rabat: On Friday night, a powerful earthquake with a magnitude of 6.8 struck Morocco’s High Atlas Mountains, resulting in the tragic loss of at least 630 lives and leaving dozens injured.

According to a statement from Morocco’s Interior Ministry, 153 individuals sustained injuries, with some in critical condition and currently receiving treatment in various hospitals.

Officials have reported that the majority of casualties occurred in remote mountainous regions that were challenging to access. Additionally, numerous buildings and homes sustained damage due to the force of the earthquake.

The seismic event occurred around 11 pm local time, affecting the provinces of Al Haouz, Ouarzazate, Marrakech, Azilal, Chichaoua, and Taroudant.

Morocco’s geophysical center initially reported a magnitude of 7.2 for the earthquake, pinpointing its epicenter in the Ighil area of the High Atlas. However, the US Geological Survey recorded a magnitude of 6.8 and placed the quake’s depth at 18.5 km (11.5 miles).

Most of the reported damage and destruction was concentrated in Marrakech, the nearest major city to the earthquake’s epicenter, where some buildings collapsed.

According to the Pan-Arab al-Arabiya news channel, unnamed local sources confirmed that a tragic incident resulted in the loss of five lives from a single family.

This earthquake marks Morocco’s deadliest seismic event since 2004 when a similar disaster struck the northern Rif Mountains, claiming the lives of over 600 people.

Videos and images circulating on social media depict scenes of devastation, with rubble from buildings strewn across roads and damaged vehicles.

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