Pakistan is stronger than Nepal

The earth is shaking again in Nepal too

NEW DELHI / ISLAMABAD. A violent earthquake hit Afghanistan, northern Pakistan and other countries on Monday afternoon German time. The civil protection agency in Pakistan first confirmed the number of twelve deaths, later they spoke of "almost two dozen deaths".

Local media reported dozens of deaths and later more than 50 victims. The real extent of the destruction may not yet be known, said the civil protection agency.

The geological research center in Potsdam registered a magnitude of 7.5 on Monday, as did the US earthquake observatory. The center was about 200 kilometers deep near the Afghan city of Faisabad

Hit by debris

In the central Pakistani province of Punjab and the northwestern province of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, people were hit by falling debris. The quake lasted more than a minute and caused severe damage, said an eyewitness.

Electricity grids and communications links collapsed in several parts of Afghanistan, Pakistan and northern India. Panic people everywhere ran into the streets.

The governor of the northeastern Afghan province of Badakhshan in the northeast of the country said he was concerned that residential areas in several regions of the province would be badly affected.

Warning of aftershocks

The Pakistani government called on the armed forces, police, local officials and civilian workers to mobilize all available forces. The Pakistani earthquake control warned of aftershocks.

An eyewitness in Abbottabad, Pakistan, told the newspaper "Dawn" that several landslides had been triggered in his region. There is a lot of damage in the Swat Valley, wrote the Pakistani-Canadian documentary filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy on Twitter.

At least one house collapsed in Peshawar in the northwest of the country. In the capital Islamabad, television failed due to the quake, as a dpa reporter reported.

Cell phone networks collapsed in Kashmir, northern India. The tremors could be felt as far as New Delhi in India and the Nepalese capital Kathmandu. Several buildings were also damaged in the north Indian city of Srinagar, the capital of Jammu and Kashmir.

An elevated road had large cracks, as a dpa reporter reported. In New Delhi the metro stopped for a while.

The disaster unites

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered aid to the affected regions. He emphasized that this also applies to Pakistan - India's political archenemy.

It was only hours before the earthquake that firing had taken place along the armistice line between the two nuclear powers. There had been deaths on both sides.

The center of the quake was around 70 kilometers south of the Afghan city of Faisabad, where the Bundeswehr maintained a satellite camp until 2012. The region is the border triangle of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Tajikistan.

Only six months ago, on April 25, there was a large Himalayan earthquake with a magnitude of 7.8, the center of which was in Nepal. Almost 9,000 people died at the time.

When measuring earthquakes, the strength of the ground movement is specified (magnitude). Around 50,000 magnitude 3 to 4 earthquakes occur around the world every year. Around 800 have the strengths 5 or 6. A major quake has the value 8.

Earthquakes can have different effects depending on their duration, the nature of the ground and the construction method. At strength 6 deaths and severe damage are to be expected in densely populated regions, at strength 7 with catastrophic consequences.