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A 7.2-magnitude earthquake hits Haiti

Picture courtesy: @DanielMcFarland via Twitter

The US Geological Survey has estimated huge fatalities following the magnitude 7.2 earthquake. Haiti has yet to fully recover from a quake a decade ago that killed nearly 200,000 people.

The quake hit at 8:29 a.m. local time (12:29 UTC) and was also felt in the Dominican Republic, which has a land border with Haiti on the island of Hispanola, and in Jamaica and Cuba which are hundreds of miles away.

The epicenter of the quake was at sea about 5 miles from the town of Petit Trou de Nippes, at a depth of 6.2 miles, the USGS confirmed. The US Tsunami Warning System issued a tsunami warning but later said "there is no further threat."

The long shock was felt throughout the country and material damage was recorded in the southwestern peninsula of the island, according to images from witnesses.

The powerful earthquake killed at least 29 people, just days before a tropical storm is expected to make landfall, and Prime Minister Ariel Henry said he was mobilizing all available government resources to help victims in the affected areas.

Henry said on Twitter that the ″violent quake″ had caused loss of life and damage in various parts of the country, and also appealed to Haitians to unify as they ″confront this dramatic situation in which we’re living right now.”

The Haitian PM declared a one-month state of emergency for the whole country. At a press conference, he said he would not ask for international help until the extent of the damages is known.

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