6.8 Earthquake Strikes Central Myanmar Damaging Ancient Pagodas
YANGON – An earthquake of 6.8 magnitude struck central Myanmar on Wednesday, US Geological Survey (USGS) said, shaking buildings across the country and the region.
The quake struck 143 km (88 miles) west of the city of Meiktila at a depth of 84 km (52 miles), the agency said.
Tremors were felt as far away as Thailand, Bangladesh and India, sending fearful residents into the streets.
Office buildings in the Thai capital of Bangkok, to the east of Myanmar, shook for a few seconds, residents there said.
A 22-year-old man was killed in the town of Pakokku due to a building collapse.
The quake shook buildings in buildings in Myanmar’s biggest city of Yangon and in other towns and cities, witnesses said.
About 60 pagodas in Bagan were damaged. Some were seriously damaged,” said Aung Kyaw, the director of Bagan’s culture department.
A tourist police officer from Bagan confirmed the damage and said a Spanish tourist was slightly hurt when the quake knocked her from the temple where she was watching the sunset.
Scaling Bagan’s ancient Buddhist monuments to watch the sun set over the city’s 2,500 temples is a daily ritual among tourists and local pilgrims who flock to the site.
The temples, built between the 10th and 14th centuries, are revered in the Buddhist-majority country.
The ancient capital is a major tourist site, home to thousands of Buddhist monuments.
Earthquakes are relatively common in Myanmar, although the country has not suffered a major one since 2012.
That powerful tremor — also of 6.8 magnitude — struck the centre of the country, killing 26 people and injuring hundreds.
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