QUETTA, Pakistan - The death toll from a powerful earthquake in Pakistan climbed to more than 230 on Wednesday after hundreds of mud houses collapsed on their inhabitants throughout the remote and thinly populated area, officials said.
Pakistan's army airlifted hundreds of soldiers to help with the aftermath of the worst earthquake in the South Asian country since 2005 when about 75,000 people were killed in the north of the country.
The Tuesday earthquake, measuring 7.7 on the Richter scale, struck Baluchistan, a huge earthquake-prone province of deserts and rugged mountains, and was felt across South Asia.
It destroyed houses and cut communications with the worst affected district of Awaran, and was so powerful that it caused a small island to emerge from the sea just off the Pakistani coastline in the Arabian Sea.
"We have started to bury the dead," Abdul Rasheed Gogazai, the deputy commissioner of Awaran, a town of 200,000, told Reuters by telephone from the affected area.