Two powerful earthquakes have struck northwestern Iran on Saturday afternoon, killing at least 250 people dead and more than 2,000 injured.
Reports say 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck the area 60 kilometres northeast of the city of Tabriz and another earthquake followed just eleven minutes later near Varzaghan, located 49 kilometres northeast of the city.
The quakes have reportedly caused damage to more than 100 villages.
Today, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expresses his deep sadness by the loss of hundreds of lives and the destruction caused by the earthquakes on Iran.
Mr. Ban extends his sincere condolences to the Iranian Government and people particularly the families of those who have been killed or affected by the disaster.
“The United Nations stands ready to lend its assistance to efforts to respond to humanitarian needs created by the disaster and to mobilize international support for that response.” -Mr. Ban
In March 2006, series of earthquakes affected some 100,000 people in western Lorestan province, killing 70 and injuring at least 1,300 others. Reports said 50 per cent of the population in and around the city of Boroujerd had been displaced and some 10,000 homes had been partially or completely damaged.
In 2003, some 26,000 people were killed by a 6.6 magnitude quake that flattened the historic southeastern city of Bam as well.
Iran is located on seismic fault lines and is prone to earthquakes.