Catastrophic Morocco earthquake takes death toll past 2,000
In an unimaginable turn of events, Morocco has been rocked by a catastrophic earthquake with a whopping 6.8 magnitude, resulting in a devastating death toll of over 2,000 people according to authorities. This seismic disaster, the strongest the North African nation has experienced in over a century, has also left thousands injured.
Unprecedented Scale of Destruction
Epicentered near the bustling city of Marrakech, the earthquake had far-reaching impacts, even rattling regions as distant as Portugal. The time of the quake was approximately 11:11 PM local time on September 8, shaking the High Atlas mountain range about 44.7 miles southwest of Marrakech. With such a substantial magnitude and shallow depth, the scale of destruction has been immense.
Historic Landmarks Ravaged
This calamity, rare but not entirely unexpected in this part of the world, has caused extensive damage to UNESCO-tagged World Heritage sites. The most significant devastation took place in the regions near the Atlas Mountains. Emergency responders dispatched to the affected areas found it challenging to access remote mountain villages due to damaged or obstructed roads.
Global Support Pours in Amid Geopolitical Tensions
Even as King Mohammed VI has established a relief commission to distribute aid, world leaders couldn’t help but express their support. India’s Prime Minister Modi, amid his high-profile role in the G20 summit, took to social media to assure support to Morocco. Turkey has pledged 265 personnel and 1,000 tents to help in the aid efforts. In a surprising move, Algeria, which severed all diplomatic ties with Morocco last year, has reopened its airspace for humanitarian aid. Heavy-hitters like the United Nations, US President Joe Biden, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and French President Macron have all declared their readiness to assist Morocco.
This tragedy has not just taken lives and demolished landmarks; it has also revealed the intricate geopolitics of a region often seen through a different lens. As the full extent of the disaster continues to emerge, the world watches, prays, and mobilizes for Morocco.