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3.9 aftershock hits Morocco; death toll from Friday's quake tops 2,100

The 6.8 magnitude quake collapsed buildings and sent people fleeing into the streets, followed by a 3.9 magnitude aftershock on Sunday.
3.9 aftershock hits Morocco; death toll from Friday's quake tops 2,100
Posted at 5:39 PM, Sep 10, 2023

The death toll keeps climbing following Morocco's most powerful earthquake in over a century.

Over 2,100 people have been confirmed dead, and state media in the country is reporting an additional 2,300 individuals injured in the earthquake, with 14,000 of them considered to have critical injuries. Officials anticipate these figures will increase as rescue operations continue.

Several governments from around the world and the United Nations have offered their support, including rescue and recovery assistance, to the African nation as it continues to assess the damage.

However, Moroccans expressed concerns about the government's limited acceptance of external assistance, according to the Associated Press.

"We know there is a great urgency to save people and dig under the remains of buildings,” said Arnaud Fraisse, founder of Rescuers Without Borders, who had a team waiting in Paris for approval to proceed. “There are people dying under the rubble, and we cannot do anything to save them.”

President Joe Biden sent condolences to the people in Morocco after Friday night's deadly 6.8-magnitude earthquake.

“I want to express my sadness about the loss of life and devastation caused by the earthquake in Morocco. Our thoughts and prayers are with the people of Morocco,” said President Biden. “We're working expeditiously to ensure American citizens in Morocco are safe, standing ready to provide any necessary assistance to the Moroccan people."

Marrakech and Atlas Mountain towns, like Moulay Brahim, were severely affected. The most extensive damage occurred in remote mountain communities, inaccessible due to blocked roads from fallen rocks. These areas were hit again on Sunday by a magnitude 3.9 aftershock, according to the AP. 

While rescue workers continue to comb through debris to find people trapped underneath piles of rubble, officials say the next 24 to 48 hours will be crucial in trying to save more lives.

The UN estimates that over 300,000 individuals were impacted by the earthquake.

SEE MORE: Powerful earthquake in Morocco kills more than 2,000 people

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