Several dead in Turkey after earthquake hits Iran border area

Several dead in Turkey after earthquake hits Iran border area

At least nine people were killed and 37 others injured in Turkey's Van province following an earthquake early on Sunday, the country's health minister has said, Al Jazeera reports.

Nine of the injured are in serious condition, Fahrettin Koca said. Earlier, Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said three of those killed were children, adding that some 1,066 buildings collapsed.

The Disaster and Emergency Management Authority had begun rescue work, Soylu said.

"Search and rescue efforts are ongoing," he said. 

The magnitude 5.7 earthquake struck the Turkey-Iran border region, the European Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC) said. The quake had a depth of 5km (3.1 miles), the EMSC said.

Turkish public broadcaster TRT World said it affected about 43 villages in Turkey, which has a history of powerful earthquakes.

TRT said damage inspection teams had been dispatched to the region. There were also reports of building collapse in the Turkish city of Van.

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