Afghans fear 80 dead after quake triggers landslide

KUNDUZ, Afghanistan Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:58am EDT

1 of 4. An Afghan man sits beside two earthquake victims in Baghlan province June 11, 2012. More than 70 people were trapped in rubble after houses made of mud collapsed from two strong earthquakes on Monday that triggered a landslide in the mountains of northern Afghanistan, officials said. A remote village in Baghlan province appeared to have taken the brunt of the damage, the provincial police chief said, adding that information was trickling in slowly from the site.

Credit: Reuters/Stringer

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KUNDUZ, Afghanistan (Reuters) - An earthquake in Afghanistan triggered a landslide which buried mud homes in a mountain village and rescuers feared at least 80 people had been killed, provincial officials said on Tuesday,

Two quakes with magnitudes of 5.4 and 5.7 struck mountainous northern Afghanistan on Monday, bringing a slide of mud and rocks down on the remote settlement.

The governor of Baghlan province said 22 homes were buried but the bodies of only two women had been recovered. Twenty people were in hospital with injuries.

"We don't think we will be able to take out the other bodies," Governor Abdul Majid said.

A rescue team only had one bulldozer to try to clear the rubble, he said.

"We will hold a prayer for the victims."

The United Nations said it was working with authorities in the area to determine what aid was needed.

Afghanistan's north is prone to earthquakes. A 2002 quake in the same province killed more than 2,000 people.

(Reporting by Mohammad Hamid; Writing by Hamid Shalizi; Editing by Sanjeev Miglani and Robert Birsel)

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