Macedonia once again dealing with the natural forces' rage: 5.3 magnitude earthquake in Skopje, on Sunday

12 September 2016 — Daniela GHETU
Just one month after the severe flooding which hit the country on August 6th, the citizens of the Macedonian capital city, Skopje, have been confronted once again with the natural forces' rage as a 5.3 magnitude earthquake struck on Sunday, fortunately without devastating effects.

The quake took place at a depth of 10km (7 miles) at 1310 GMT, 2km northeast of Skopje, according to the U.S. Geological Service. Witnesses said windows shattered and some cracks had appeared on walls in the capital, which sits on a fault line, and there was panic among residents, reports Reuters. At least four strong aftershocks followed the big quake, while a smaller quake was recorded earlier in the day, a representative of the national seismological observatory told The Associated Press.

While the earthquake could be felt in neighboring Kosovo, in Skopje at least 30 people were reported injured while they were trying to leave their houses in panic, but there were no victims, as well as no major material damages. Skopje was almost completely destroyed by an earthquake in 1963 which killed over 1,000 people in one of Europe's worst-ever natural disasters.

The Sunday earthquake comes after the recent dramatic flooding which affected the city. A severe thunderstorm brought torrential rainfall during the night between 6 and 7 August, 2016, which left some areas around the city under 1.5 meters of flood water. The worst hit were the northern suburbs of Skopje and some of the near villages. At least 20 people were reported dead, sone other tens injured, while thousand of homes and farms were completely distroyed or severily damaged, leaving tens of thousand people without housing.

Given the large damages produced by flooding, both financial and humanitarian assistance are needed in addition to the efforts made by the Macedonian goverment.Financial donations should be addressed to:

The Macedonian Red Cross

Bank name: Komercijalna Banka AD Skopje
Bank address: ul. Orce Nikolov No. 3 1000 Skopje, Macedonia
Bank account: 30000000000013325730522-11
IBAN Code: MK07300701000001228

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