On Nov. 12, the deadliest earthquake of 2017, reaching a magnitude of 7.3, hit the border of Iran and Iraq. The death toll has topped 530, while 8,000 more people have been injured.
“On Tuesday, Iranian officials called off rescue operations on the grounds there was little chance of finding more survivors from the quake,” ABC News reported.
Photo by Tasnim News Agency
One women, who was out of town during the earthquake, lost her 7-year-old son in the quake. She had to bury him herself.
“He was a wonderful little boy, great at school, well-behaved,” she told NBC News.
Another woman was three-months pregnant and trapped under the rubble of her two-story house for 16 hours.
“Her husband, Peyman, started digging through the rubble with his bare hands before the military and rescue services could get to the site and help,” NBC News reported.
The earthquake emanated 14 miles under the surface of the earth, which in geological terms is not very deep.
Per CNN, “The quake was at a depth of 23 km (just over 14 miles), which is considered shallow, according to the survey. It was felt across the region with aftershocks hitting Pakistan, Lebanon, Kuwait and Turkey…”
Despite the strife between the United States and Iran, because of the latter’s missile testing, America sent sympathy to Iran after noting the high death toll.
“The US Government expressed condolences to the Iranian people,” ABC News reported, “despite President Donald Trump’s ‘aggressive’ policy towards the Islamic Republic, Iranian state media reported.”
The Yari family was badly hit by the earthquake. They live in Sapol-e-Zahob, an Iranian town in the epicenter of the quake, and one of the hardest hit towns. Even though the Yari family lost everything, they are grateful everyone came out of their house alive. They refused to take the tents and food the Iranian army offered survivors, knowing there are people who need it more than they do.
In an interview with the Yari family, they explained to NBC, “The army keeps trying to give us tents and food, but my husband has too much pride. He keeps telling them to give it to other people because they need it more than we do.”
Currently, the Iranian army and other governmental organizations are the only ones who have responded to the great need for reconstruction. The Iranian government so far has disallowed foreign nonprofits to help with the huge task ahead of them. The Southern Baptist Convention is planning on sending aid to Iran and Iraq to help with the reconstruction when they’re able to.
According to Baptist Press, Jeff Palmer, executive director of Baptist Global Response, said, “We are definitely calling for people to pray for those affected, but at this point we really don’t have an idea what the response will be like. We will know more in the next few days.”
Please pray for those who have been affected by the earthquake, that relief would come to them quickly. Also pray for wisdom for disaster relief teams to have wisdom on when to go to Iran and Iraq to help with disaster relief efforts.