A moderate earthquake with a magnitude 5.1 and its aftershocks rattled a sparsely populated remote area in eastern Iran on Sunday morning, the official IRNA news agency reported.
The earthquake hit the town of Arianshahr near Birjand some 1,300 kilometres southeast of the capital, Tehran at 7:21 local time.
“Some people took refuge at tents after the quake caused cracks on the old walls in the epicentre,” the report said. Families kept their children from school out of fear and over the next two hours there were 11 aftershocks.
Iran is located on several seismic fault lines and is prone to earthquakes, experiencing at least one slight quake every day on average. In November, a medium-sized quake injured 20 schoolchildren in southwestern Iran.
In March 2006, three earthquakes and nine aftershocks hit western Iran, in quick succession, killing at least 70 people and injuring about 1,200. (AP)
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