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Earthquake near Iran-Iraq border kills more than 340 people

Thousands of others were injured.

A powerful earthquake near the border of Iran and Iraq has killed more than 300 people and injured thousands of others. 

The 7.3-magnitude earthquake struck near the Iraqi city of Halabja at 9:18 p.m. local time Sunday (12:18 p.m. in Minnesota), the U.S. Geological Survey reports

CNN, citing local news organizations, says in Iran 336 people were killed and 3,950 were injured. In Iraq's semiautonomous Kurdish region, at least seven people were killed and 535 were injured, The Associated Press notes

Iraq's Prime Minister tweeted about the quake: 

First responders worked through the night trying to rescue victims from the rubble, the Washington Post reports, noting the death toll is expected to rise even higher. 

More than 100 aftershocks followed the initial quake, which could be felt as far away as Pakistan, Lebanon, Kuwait and Turkey, reports say. 

Photos posted on social media show crumbled buildings and people crying in the streets. People also reported power outages and spotty cellphone service in the area, the AP says. 

The U.S. Geological Survey says the region where the quake struck has structures that are "highly vulnerable" to earthquake shaking, adding that secondary hazards could include landslides. 

This area is no stranger to powerful earthquakes. The U.S. Geological Survey says the area has experienced four other 6-plus magnitude quakes in the last century. Among the most deadly was in June 199, when the earthquake caused 40,000-50,000 deaths and more than 60,000 injuries. It also left 600,000 people homeless.

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