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2 hours ago

Hundreds Dead as M7.8 Quake Hits Nepal: Reports

A powerful 7.8-magnitude earthquake shook Nepal on Saturday, killing hundreds of people in four countries, leveling buildings in the capital of Kathmandu and triggering at least one deadly avalanche on Mount Everest, NBC News reported. A police official said 449 people have been confirmed dead in Nepal, The Associated Press reported, adding that 30 died in neighboring countries where the quake was felt, including 20 in India. However, Reuters reported that 688 people had died, quoting a senior home ministry source. There was no explanation for the different estimates and NBC News was not able to immediately confirm the death toll. The epicenter of the earthquake was about 50 miles northwest of Kathmandu, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. First reported by the USGS as a 7.5, then a 7.9, the quake spawned a powerful 6.6-magnitude aftershock and triggered deadly tremors in India and Pakistan. Shristi Mainali, a 21-year-old nursing student described to NBC News the terrifying moment the earthquake hit Kathmandu just before noon local time (2:15 a.m. ET). "It was a sound like thunder," Mainali said. "It lasted for more than a minute... it was really shaking shaking shaking." Read »
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It was a sound like thunder.... It was really shaking shaking shaking.  

— Shristi Mainali a 21-year-old nursing student in Kathmandu, Nepal, describing Saturday's 7.9-magnitude earthquake there.
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By Michael Rodio

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A powerful 7.9-magnitude earthquake struck Nepal on Saturday, killing hundreds... See Full Gallery »

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