5.8 quake shakes Afghanistan, Pakistan

Posted at 07/21/12 4:46 PM

Kabul – Buildings shook in the Afghan capital Kabul Thursday as an earthquake with a magnitude of 5.8 struck in the northern Hindu Kush region, according to a preliminary report by the US Geological Survey.

There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties from the remote region, but two slightly smaller quakes last month triggered landslides that killed at least 75 villagers.

In Kabul Thursday, office workers felt their chairs shake briefly and desk lamps swayed as the tremor hit.

The quake struck some 72 kilometers (45 miles) south south east of Faizabad, capital of Badakhshan province, and 121 kilometers (75 miles) northwest of Chitral in Pakistan at a depth of 190 kilometers, the USGS said.

Tremors were also felt in Pakistan's capital Islamabad, central Punjab and the northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province where people came out of their homes and offices but there were no reports of damage or casualties, an official said.

Northern Afghanistan and Pakistan are frequently hit by earthquakes, especially in the Hindu Kush, which lies near the collision of the Eurasian and Indian tectonic plates.

A 7.6-magnitude earthquake in Pakistan in October 2005 killed 74,000 people and displaced 3.5 million.

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