September 10, 2008

Four Dead in Southern Iran Quake

Four people died as a strong 6.1 magnitude earthquake struck Iran Wednesday near the southern port city of Bandar Abbas, state media said.

State-owned Press TV said local officials in Iran's Hormozgan Province described the quake as demolishing nearly 200 villages, killing at least four people and injuring 26 others, adding that rescue teams have been dispatched to the area.

The Gulf island of Qeshm bore most of the casualties, sources told the BBC, which reported the injured were being evacuated by boat to Bandar Abbas. The Iranian news agency Isna said five of them were deemed to be in serious condition.

A Red Crescent official, speaking on Iranian television, said it was unlikely the quake had caused a high number of casualties, the British broadcaster said.