Iran’s death toll climbs to 530 after earthquake near Iran-Iraq border


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The death toll in Iran has climbed to 530 after a powerful earthquake struck the Iran and Iraq border region Sunday, Iran’s state-run news agency said.

Over 7,400 others in Iran were injured, the IRNA news agency said.

“People have been scared” after the magnitude-7.3 quake, Hamzeh Zarei, speaking in Farsi, told ABC News in Iran.

“People do not dare to go back home, so they have camped around the city and they are sleeping in the tents,” he said. “And it is very cold. But, being afraid of their lives, scared of what happened last night, they all stayed here outside.”

Zarei said people were in need off tents and blankets and he said people “urgently needed drinking water.”

Rescuers today dug through debris from the collapsed buildings.

Hassan Rouhani, president of Iran, went to see the damage today in Kermanshah, which appeared to be the most affected area, The Associated Press said.

Rouhani said, “This was a pain for all Iranians,” according to a statement on the presidency’s website, the AP said. “Representing the nation of Iran, I offer my condolences to the people of Kermanshah, and tell them that all of us are behind Kermanshah.”

The quake hit Iran much harder than Iraq. Seven deaths and 535 injuries were reported in Iraq, the Interior Ministry said, according to the AP.

Amina Mohammed said she and her sons fled their home in Darbandikhan, Iraq, as the house fell apart, the AP reported.

“I screamed to God and it must have been him who stopped the stairs from entirely collapsing on us,” she said, according to the AP.

View the original article: http://abcnews.go.com/International/irans-death-toll-climbs-530-powerful-earthquake-iran/story?id=51137102

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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