Magnitude 5.9 natural disaster strikes neighbouring Haiti

5.9 quake strikes Haiti, shaking & damaging buildings

5.9 quake strikes Haiti, shaking & damaging buildings

At least 12 people were killed and 188 were wounded after a magnitude 5.9 natural disaster struck northern Haiti on Saturday night, the country's interior ministry said Sunday.

President Jovenel Moise, 50, urged people to remain calm and tweeted that he had ordered "all of the republic's resources" to be directed toward recovery efforts.

The government said eight of the 12 victims were killed in Port-de-Paix, capital of Haiti's Nord-Ouest department, while three were in Gros-Morne and one in Saint-Louis-du-Nord.

Saturday's quake, centred 19 kilometres northwest of Port-de-Paix, injured more than 188 people, damaging or leveling several homes and public buildings.

Saturday's quake, which was felt across the country, struck at 8:10 pm (0010 GMT Sunday) at a shallow depth of 7.3 miles.

A total of at least 12 people were killed in the quake, Interior Minister Fednel Monchery told radio station MAGK9.

Impoverished Haiti, where many live in tenuous circumstances, is vulnerable to earthquakes and hurricanes. It said the injured are receiving treatment in hospitals.

An quake has struck off the northern coast of Haiti, killing at least 11 people and injuring more than a hundred when several buildings collapsed in the impoverished Caribbean country, officials said.

Poverty and political instability have prevented Haiti from shoring up weaker buildings despite the two major fault lines along the island of Hispaniola, which it shares with the Dominican Republic.

Rescue workers in Haiti said they were not looking for any more victims, but evidence of the quake's destruction was on view. Others tilted at precarious angles.

Meanwhile, dozens of people could be seen sifting through debris before hauling away rebar to recycle and sell. On Sunday morning he said that he was en route to Port-de-Paix and Gros-Morne.

The agency said damage and injuries were mostly concentrated in the northwest region of the island, where two minor aftershocks were also felt, the agency said.

In 2010, a magnitude 7.1 tremor killed more than 250,000 people in Haiti.

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