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At least 8 dead after 5.6 earthquake hits Iran

The 5.6 earthquake hit southern Iran Thursday evening near the Bushehr nuclear reactor, injuring at least 30 with eight recorded deaths.

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The city of Bandar Bushehr in Iran. (Wikimedia commons)

At least eight people are dead and thirty more injured after a 5.6 magnitude earthquake hit southern Iran — not far from the Russian-built Bushehr nuclear power plant, a symbol of much recent political controversy. 

According to figures from the US Geological Survey, the temblor struck about 8.7 miles northeast of the city of Borazjan, which is located about 48 miles north of the aforementioned power plant.

More from GlobalPost: Iran earthquake hits close to Bushehr nuclear plant, kills 37

Governer Fereidoun Hasanvand of Bushehr province said to television that 45 people had been injured, according to the Associated Press.

The quake struck around 15:21 PM Thursday, according to the Fars News Agency, which reported eight dead and 59 injuries, with a continuing series of 40 aftershocks.

Head of Iran's Crisis-Management Headquarters Hassan Qadami said to FNA that 12 of the wounded remain in critical condition, while the rest were well enough to be sent home. Emergency teams have been dispatched to the area. 

Although no reports have yet to indicate that the Bushehr plant has been damaged, Arab neighbors have expressed concern over potential damage to the plant — which is close to a major fault line — if an unusually powerful quake struck the area. 

An April earthquake in the area near Bushehr killed at least 37 and injured hundreds more, although the nuclear plant was spared any damage during the incident. 

According to ISIS, the plant first came online in September 2011, with Russian supplying the fuel. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/middle-east/iran/131128/at-least-seven-dead-after-56-earthquake-hits-iran