Morocco Earthquake Updates: In a heartbreaking turn of events, the toll from the powerful 6.8 magnitude earthquake that struck Morocco last Friday has risen to a staggering 2,862 casualties, with an additional 2,562 individuals injured, as reported by Al Jazeera.
Morocco’s government is under pressure to accept more international aid, as rescuers battle with exhaustion.
So far, it has accepted help from only four countries – Spain, the UK, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.
Rescue operations remain in full swing as teams from Spain, the United Kingdom, and Qatar have joined hands with Moroccan rescue units to locate survivors amidst the rubble. The earthquake’s epicenter was situated 72 kilometers (45 miles) southwest of Marrakesh and was felt deeply across the High Atlas Mountains.
The disaster has been compounded by the prevalence of traditional mud brick buildings in the region, which have largely disintegrated, making it challenging to find survivors. The mountain village of Tafeghaghte, located 60 kilometers (37 miles) from Marrakesh, bore the brunt of the catastrophe, with nearly every structure reduced to rubble.
Both civilian volunteers and Moroccan military personnel are tirelessly working together to rescue survivors and recover the bodies of those who tragically lost their lives.
Expressing his condolences, Prime Minister Narendra Modi conveyed his sorrow over the loss of lives in Morocco. He stated, “Extremely pained by the loss of lives due to an earthquake in Morocco. In this tragic hour, my thoughts are with the people of Morocco. Condolences to those who have lost their loved ones. May the injured recover at the earliest. India is ready to offer all possible assistance to Morocco in this difficult time.”
Albert Vasquez, a communications officer for a team of 30 Spanish firefighters, told the AFP news agency that “it’s very difficult to find people alive after three days” but “hope is still there”.
In the village of Moulay Brahim, 26-year-old Said told the BBC that he saw his neighbour’s house collapse.
“A family of six people lived there. The father was outside at the time and is still alive, but his wife and four children were there and died,” he said, in a state of shock.
“The daughters were 15, eight and five years old. The last child was a little boy about to turn three” he explained.
Said has not been able to sleep or eat since Friday night. “The situation is catastrophic. I don’t know how I will recover from this,” he said.
The earthquake, which occurred at 03:41:01 (UTC+05:30) at a depth of 18.5 kilometers, sent shockwaves rippling across the region, from Sidi Ifni in the south to Rabat in the north, leaving a trail of devastation in its wake. The international community has rallied to support Morocco in its time of crisis, with rescue and relief efforts continuing relentlessly.