Death toll from Nepal earthquake rises to 128
The quake, occurring at a depth of 10 to 15 km, triggered four aftershocks of over magnitude 4.0 and left 140 people injured
The death toll from a strong 6.4-magnitude earthquake in Nepal has risen to 128 as rescue operations go on, government officials said on Saturday.
The shallow quake hit Jajarkot and Rukum West districts at 11.47 pm on Friday, injuring at least 140, Nepal Police spokesman Kuber Kadayat told Xinhua news agency.
It was difficult for the rescue teams to reach some places as bridges were damaged, and roads were blocked by landslides triggered by the quake, he said.
The depth of the earthquake is between 10 to 15 km, and an additional four aftershocks above magnitude 4.0 have been recorded by Saturday morning, according to Lok Bijay Adhikari from Nepal's National Earthquake Monitoring and Research Centre. "The aftershocks continue," he added.
The Nepali government is focusing on the rescue and treatment of the injured after the earthquake. "The rescue and treatment of the injured is the first priority," home ministry spokesman Narayan Prasad Bhattarai told Xinhua.
Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal went to the affected area on Saturday morning along with health workers, and helicopters were being mobilised for the rescue operation, he said.
"We have not yet taken details about damage to houses and other infrastructure as the focus is on rescue," said Bhattarai. "So far, there are no reports of casualties from other districts."
In October, three quakes above magnitude 4.0 jolted the Dhading district in central Nepal, with one measuring 6.1. In 2015, a 7.8-magnitude earthquake killed some 9,000 people and damaged more than half-a-million houses in the Himalayan country.