MASHKAIL, PAKISTAN – More than 12,000 Pakistanis living in a remote, impoverished southwestern desert region near the Iranian border have been affected by this week’s huge earthquake, a relief official said Thursday.
The 7.8-magnitude quake, which struck southeastern Iran on Tuesday, was the most powerful to strike the Islamic republic in five decades and killed 41 people — all but one of them in Pakistan.
The worst-affected area in Pakistan has been Mashkail, in Baluchistan, where the lack of paved roads, electricity, mobile phone coverage and medical facilities have hampered rescue efforts.
“We have done a rapid survey and found that over 12,000 people have been affected by the quake in Mashkail,” said Meh boob Ali, a district coordinator for the Baluchistan Rural Support Program charity.
He said more than 3,200 homes, made mostly of mud, were either damaged or no longer habitable, forcing people to sleep out in the open or in makeshift shelters for a third night.
The military Thursday continued to fly in medicine and tents, but more supplies are desperately needed, said local official Syed Mureed Shah. “There’s growing impatience among the people affected by the quake as they are not receiving relief goods,” Shah said.