At least five people have died and more than 120 have been injured due to an earthquake of magnitude 5.9 on the Richter scale recorded in the early hours of Friday in the province of East Azerbaijan, in northeastern Iran.
The epicenter is 57 kilometers from the city of Hastrud and the hypocenter is 8 kilometers deep, according to the TV channel Press TV.
As the Euro-Mediterranean Seismological Center reports, some 20 million people have felt the earthquake throughout Iran and possibly in Turkey due to the shallow depth of the hypocenter.
In the localities near the epicenter there have also been several replicas of magnitude 4.1 and 4.8. Mohamed Baqer Honar, head of the crisis management center in the province, has indicated that eight rescue teams have been sent to the affected areas.
The earthquake – a fairly common phenomenon in northwestern Iran – has taken place around 2.20 in the morning (local time) in an area near the borders with Armenia and Azerbaijan, according to data from the United States Geological Survey (USGS , for its acronym in English).
Iran has been hit by several large earthquakes in recent years. In 2003, more than 26,000 people lost their lives after an earthquake in the town of Bam, in eastern Iran.
In 1990, an earthquake of magnitude 7.4 left thousands dead in northern Iran. Two other seismic phenomena left about 1,000 dead in 2005 and 2012.