The 5.3 magnitude quake also injured several people in Qadis district in the western province of Badghis
Courtesy of: earthquake.usgs.gov
At least 12 people were killed after an earthquake hit western Afghanistan on Monday, an official said.
The victims died when the roofs of their residential homes collapsed in Qadis district in the western province of Badghis, district governor Mohammad Saleh Purdel said.
The shallow earthquake was magnitude 5.3, according to the US Geological Survey.
“Several people were also injured in today’s earthquake,” Purdel said, adding that victims included women and children.
Afghanistan is already in the grip of a humanitarian catastrophe, made worse by the Taliban takeover of the country in August, when Western countries froze international aid and access to assets held abroad.
Qadis is one of the regions most affected by a devastating drought, having benefited little from international aid over the past 20 years.
The country is frequently hit by earthquakes, especially in the Hindu Kush mountain range, which lies near the junction of the Eurasian and Indian tectonic plates.
Earthquakes can cause major damage to poorly constructed homes and buildings in impoverished Afghanistan.
In 2015, nearly 280 people were killed when a powerful 7.5 magnitude earthquake centered in the mountain range rocked South Asia, with the bulk of the dead in Pakistan.
In this disaster, 12 young Afghan girls were crushed to death in a stampede as they tried to flee their shaking school building.