At least seven people have been killed in Nepal and northern parts of India after a 6.8-magnitude earthquake struck the region today (18-09-2011 Sunday).
Five people died in Nepal, including three crushed when a wall of the British embassy compound collapsed in the capital, Kathmandu and two in Dharan. At least two people died in the states of Sikkim and Bihar, officials said. Several minor earthquakes have hit the region this year, but none have caused major damage. In Kathmandu, 270km (170 miles) west of the epicentre, buildings were evacuated and traffic came to a standstill.
According to the National Seismologic Center (NSC), the epicenter of the 6.8 magnitude earthquake was in the border of Taplejung and the Indian state of Sikkim. Tremors were felt throughout Nepal and some parts of India.
“Four people were injured when a wall collapsed after the quake. All of them were rushed to hospital but three died during treatment,” Kedar Rijal, the chief of Kathmandu police, told Reuters news agency.
Those dead included a motorcyclist and his eight-year-old child who were struck as they rode past, police said.
Telephone lines were knocked out across Sikkim state, while power cuts plunged Gangtok, the capital, into darkness shortly after the quake hit.
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