Morocco Earthquake: Over 1,000 People Lose Their Lives

Marrakech, Morocco – A catastrophic Morocco Earthquake, measuring 6.8 on the Richter scale, has struck near Morocco’s historic city of Marrakech, claiming the lives of over 1,000 people and leaving hundreds injured.

The devastating tremors wreaked havoc on villages across the Atlas Mountains and caused significant damage to historical sites within the heart of Marrakech.

Panic and Chaos Unleashed

As the Earthquake in Morocco struck on a Friday night, video footage shared online depicted the horrifying scenes of people dazed and panicked. They were navigating the darkened streets amid dust clouds in search of safety.

Mourad Louksani, a Marrakech hotel manager, recounted his experience during the quake. He described hearing an unusual sound while lying in bed with his children, followed by the terrifying sensation of their apartment shaking. “My children were crying,” he said.

“Fortunately, we got outside the house and went downstairs into the building, where we saw everybody fleeing their homes. Everybody went outside.”

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Challenges in Rescue Efforts

Rescue teams have been tirelessly working through the night. However, the extent of the devastation has made their task challenging, with many roads rendered impassable, hindering their ability to reach the injured and those trapped beneath the rubble in remote towns and villages.

Adding to the crisis, several areas have reportedly lost power.

Aid Efforts Underway

The Moroccan government has swiftly dispensed trucks with essential aid supplies to reach the affected areas. These supplies include blankets, food, and camp cots.

In Marrakech, ambulances have been racing through the streets, ferrying the injured to hospitals, which are now struggling to cope with the influx of patients.

Historical Treasures in Peril

Marrakech, a city that traces its roots back to the 11th century, boasts numerous stone buildings and masonry structures. However, these are ill-equipped to withstand seismic activity.

The iconic 12th-century Koutoubia Mosque, a city symbol, may have suffered damage. Online videos have shown the mosque’s towering minaret trembling, with dust billowing from its peak.

Additionally, the famed red walls encircling the ancient city, a UNESCO World Heritage site, have reportedly crumbled in places.

International Support and Sympathy

Marrakech, a popular tourist destination, draws visitors from around the globe. In the aftermath of the earthquake, tourists have joined Moroccans in queues at Marrakesh hospitals, volunteering to donate blood to assist the wounded.

President Biden expressed his condolences, stating, “We are deeply saddened by the loss of life in Morocco. We are working expeditiously to ensure American citizens in Morocco are safe and ready to provide any necessary assistance for the Moroccan people.”

France and Germany, home to significant Moroccan expatriate populations, are among the many nations offering to send aid to Morocco.

A Historical Tremor

This earthquake marks the most powerful ever recorded in the Atlas Mountains region. While Morocco is not unfamiliar with seismic activity, the last major earthquake disaster occurred in 1960. It claimed the lives of between 12,000 and 15,000 people near the coastal city of Agadir.

As Morocco grapples with the immense tragedy and destruction caused by this earthquake, the international community stands in solidarity. They offer support and aid to help the nation recover from this devastating natural disaster.

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