The 6.9 magnitude earthquake that shook Myanmar on Wednesday has left at least two people dead and dozens injured. There were no initial reports of fatalities, but the Hindustan Times are now reporting at least two deaths and 70 injured in Assam.
The Myanmar quake took place at a depth of around 87 miles northwest of Mandalay, and tremors could be felt in the north-east state of Assam, where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are staying. The quake isn’t reported to have hit in a densely-populated area, and the town doesn’t have many highrise buildings, which may reduce the final damages.
People in Myanmar’s main city, Yangon, in the capital of Bangladesh Daka, and in India’s Kolkata fled buildings in panic.
Initial reports by ABC estimated around 50 people were injured in the Myanmar earthquake. Earthquakes are common in Myanmar, a country with poor communications infrastructure, which means news of fatalities and damages will keep pouring in as contact is made with those isolated areas.
This earthquake occurred at intermediate depth in Myanmar, according to the USGS, and took place within the Indian tectonic plate as it subducts beneath Eurasia. Such earthquakes, although they can be felt at the Earth’s surface, are less likely to cause severe damage.
Reports from Yangon have described a seven-storey hospital shaking during the two-minute earthquake, which caused patients and staff to exit the building.
Reports of new injuries are coming in on local news channels:
— Zee News (@ZeeNews) April 14, 2016
In March, 2011, at least 74 people were killed in an earthquake in Myanmar near its borders with Thailand and Laos.
Duchess Kate and husband Duke of Cambridge have been staying in Assam’s Kaziranga National Park but have been reported to be safe.
British Deputy High Commissionner Scott Furssedonn-Wood, who is staying in the same resort as the royal couple, was quoted by AP saying they “felt the tremor very strongly” but that all was “fine.”
Myanmar isn’t part of Kate and Will’s schedule this time around, and the royals are now headed to Bhutan for a two-day visit, according to The Mirror, before heading back to India and then the UK.
— Thin (@thinink) April 13, 2016
7:57pm, #Dhaka – rudely awakened from a new year dinner by an earthquake
People out on the streets now pic.twitter.com/iucYwlRCwL
— Prasanna KC (@KC_Prasanna) April 13, 2016
— EMSC (@LastQuake) April 14, 2016
Myanmar is still under a lot of strain politically, with the newly elected government releasing up to 200 political prisoners last week, which prompted praise and caution from rights groups and the international community.
State Councilor Aung San Suu Kyi is still working to have other freed or their charges dropped, only a couple of weeks after Myanmar’s upper house of parliament passed a bill which made the Nobel peace prize laureate state councilor.
The Inquisitr reported on her nomination, which effectively makes the Myanmar’s National League for Democracy (NLD) chair as powerful as the prime minister. The motion was highly objected against by the Burmese military opposition.
[AP Photo/Bikas Das]