Iran quake survivors, sleeping on rubble, ask for help

Death toll in earthquake at Iran-Iraq border rises to 530, more than 7000 injured

Iran Earthquake: Baby Taken Out of Rubble Alive after 3 Days

More than 400 people were killed and close to 8,000 injured in the quake.

Footage of rescue workers frantically combing through the rubble of dozens of villages immediately after the quake were showing on television.

Blocked roads were making it harder to reach some remote villages, while landslides were also hindering efforts.

On Monday, Iranian officials said they were setting up relief camps for the displaced and that 22,000 tents, 52,000 blankets and tonnes of food and water had been distributed, reported Agence France-Presse.

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The magnitude 7.3 natural disaster that struck Sunday night was felt strongly throughout western Iran. It struck at 9:48 p.m. Iran time, just as people began retiring for the night.

The worst damage appeared to be in the Kurdish town of Sarpol-e-Zahab in the western Iranian province of Kermanshah, which sits in the Zagros Mountains that divide Iran and Iraq.

Iranian officials called off rescue operations earlier in the day on the grounds that there was little chance of finding more survivors from the quake, which killed at least 530 people and injured thousands of others.

Hospitals in nearby provinces took in numerous injured, state television said, airing footage of survivors waiting to be treated.

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On the Iraq side of the frontier, nine people were killed and over 550 injured, all in the northern Kurdish provinces.

An arrest warrant has been issued for a contractor responsible for a recently built hospital which was heavily damaged in the town of Islamabad-e Gharb, parliamentarian Heshmatollah Falahatpisheh said on Tuesday, according to the Iranian Labour News Agency (ILNA).

Iraqi seismologist Abdul-Karim Abdullah Taqi, who runs the natural disaster monitoring group at the state-run Meteorological Department, said the main reason for the lower casualty figure in Iraq was the angle and direction of the fault line in this particular quake.

"Where is the aid?"

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Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, offered his condolences and urged rescuers and government agencies to do all they can to help those affected by the quake.

In an open space away from wrecked housing blocks, men and women, some wrapped in blankets, huddled around a campfire. "The authorities should speed up their help", she said. "It was dark and terrifying and I don't know how we managed to get out of building", she said.

Reza Mohammadi, 51, said he and his family ran into the alley following the first shock.

"I tried to receive a tent, but the number of tents is limited and only strong people who can survive in the crowd can get one", she said.

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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has visited the quake-stricken area and promised the government "will use all its power to resolve the problems in the shortest time". He also assured those made homeless of state supports. More than 100 aftershocks followed the quake.

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