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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 September 2018

Eight earthquakes strike along Iran-Iraq border and rattle Baghdad

Iranian state television said online that people rushed into the streets as the temblors hit

An Iranian girl looks through a salvaged mirror from a damaged building in the town of Sarpol-e Zahab in the western Kermanshah province near the border with Iraq, on November 14, 2017, following a 7.3-magnitude earthquake. Atta Kenare / AFP
An Iranian girl looks through a salvaged mirror from a damaged building in the town of Sarpol-e Zahab in the western Kermanshah province near the border with Iraq, on November 14, 2017, following a 7.3-magnitude earthquake. Atta Kenare / AFP

A series of eight earthquakes hit the Iran-Iraq border area and rattled even Baghdad and parts of the Iraqi countryside on Thursday, apparently aftershocks of a temblor in November that killed over 530 people. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.

The US Geological Survey said seven of the quakes struck near the Iraqi city of Mandali and an eighth struck near Mehran in western Iran. All struck within an hour of each other, beginning at 0659 GMT.

Seven had a preliminary magnitude of at least 5, while the eighth earthquake was a magnitude 4. Earthquakes of magnitude 5 and up to 5.9 are classified as moderate.

Iranian authorities offered similar figures for the earthquakes on state television. All the information could change as scientists examine the data.

Iranian state television said online that people rushed into the streets as the temblors hit. In Baghdad, people felt a quake shake the Iraqi capital, followed by what felt like aftershocks.

All the earthquakes struck at a depth of 10 kilometres, according to the USGS. Earthquakes at magnitude 5 can cause considerable damage. The temblors also all were very shallow, which causes more ground shaking and potential damage, particularly in places without strict building codes.

In November, a major 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck the same region, killing over 530 people and injuring thousands in Iran alone. In Iraq, nine people were killed and 550 were injured, all in the country's northern Kurdish region, according to the UN.

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