Massive Earthquake Rocks Morocco, Leaving 820 Dead and Numerous Injured [FOOTAGE]

A devastating 6.8 magnitude earthquake struck Morocco late Friday, claiming the lives of at least 820 individuals, injuring more than 670, and leaving over 200 in critical condition. Historic sites have been damaged and countless residents, in fear, evacuated their homes.

Massive Earthquake Rocks Morocco, Leaving 820 Dead and Numerous Injured [FOOTAGE]

The official figures were announced on Morocco’s state television on Saturday, drawing information from the Ministry of Interior.

Amid the heart-wrenching devastation, Montasir Itri, a resident of Asni, a mountain village close to the quake’s epicenter, recounted the harrowing aftermath. He lamented, “Most houses in our village are in ruins. Our neighbours are buried under the debris, and the community is tirelessly working with limited resources to free them.”

In Marrakesh, a city proximate to the epicenter, residents reported collapsed buildings, particularly in the old city area, a revered UNESCO World Heritage site. Distressing images of a toppled mosque minaret, with the debris damaging several vehicles, were broadcasted on local channels.

The Interior Ministry has named several affected provinces, including Al Haouz, Ouarzazate, Marrakesh, Azilal, Chichaoua, and Taroudant. Their televised message primarily aimed at reassuring and urging the public to remain calm during these testing times.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) pinpointed the quake’s timing to be just past 11 pm local time (22:00 GMT) on Friday. The agency located the epicenter in the Atlas Mountains, approximately 75 km (44 miles) from Marrakesh, Morocco’s fourth-largest city.

Post-disaster, frantic search and rescue operations have been underway. The interior ministry stated: “Efforts are in full swing as the Royal Armed Forces, local authorities, security services, and civil protection are mobilized to provide immediate relief and evaluate the magnitude of destruction.”

An eyewitness recounted the sudden terror to Al Jazeera, emphasizing that the most severe destruction occurred in Marrakesh’s old city due to the buildings’ fragile state.

Meanwhile, Professor Eid al-Tarazi, a seismology expert from Jordan, cautioned that the region might experience hundreds of aftershocks in the upcoming weeks. He advised, “Residents should be wary of unstable buildings and anticipate aftershocks, which might persist for up to a month.”

The nation now grapples with this unexpected calamity, as the world watches and offers its support.

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