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    Death toll from Haiti earthquake rises to more than 700


    Les Cayes, Haiti – The death toll from a powerful magnitude 7.2 earthquake in Haiti climbed sharply on Sunday, with at least 724 dead and a minimum of 2,800 injured.

    The updated figures from Haiti’s Office of Civil Protection follow a previous count of 304 dead. The office’s director, Jerry Chandler, said rescuers are continuing to search for possible survivors under the rubble.

    People in the Caribbean island nation rushed into the streets to seek safety and to help help rescue those trapped in the rubble of collapsed homes, hotels and other structures.

    Saturday’s earthquake struck the southwestern part of the hemisphere’s poorest nation, almost razing some towns and triggering landslides that hampered rescue efforts in two of the hardest-hit communities. The disaster added to the plight of Haitians who were already grappling with the coronavirus pandemic, a presidential assassination and a wave of gang violence.

    The epicenter of the quake was about 125 kilometers (78 miles) west of the capital of Port-au-Prince, the U.S. Geological Survey said. The widespread damage could worsen by early next week, with Tropical Storm Grace predicted to reach Haiti late Monday or early Tuesday, bringing torrential rains.

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