At least 180 people were killed and over 1300 others injured in the 6.2 magnitude earthquake that struck on Saturday northwest of Iran. According to Iran's state television, hundreds of homes were damaged by the earthquake that struck near the city of Ahar, in the province of East Azerbaijan.
"The latest information received indicates that about 80 people were killed and 400 injured," said Gholamreza Massoumi, head of emergency services in the country. He said the injured had been transferred to Tabriz and Ardebil.
Two earthquakes at magnitude of 6.2 and 6, whose epicenter was located about sixty kilometers from Tabriz and some ten kilometers underground, hit the region at 4:53 p.m. and 5:04 p.m. The cities of Tabriz, Ardabil, Ahar, Varzeghan, and Mehraban Heris as well as many villages have been affected by the two earthquakes and numerous aftershocks.
Iran is located on several major fault lines and has experienced many devastating earthquakes in the past. The deadliest earthquake in recent years has killed 31,000 people, a quarter of the population in the city of Bam (South of Iran) in December 2003.