On Saturday 11 Aug 2012, two strong earthquakes, measuring 6.4 and 6.3 on the Richter Scale, jolted North Western Iran within 11 minutes of each other. Their double tapping destroyed 230 rural villages, killed 306 and injured more than 3,000 people. Many are still listed missing and unaccounted for.
Besides government agencies responding to the calamity caused by the twin killers, the leading local non-governmental agency, the Red Crescent organization, converted a sports stadium to a temporary shelter for 16,000 victims who have either lost their homes or were afraid to return for fear of another earthquake or aftershocks. It distributed 3,000 tents, blankets and food to the victims.
The Iranian government rejected offers of help from many countries, including the United States of America, Germany, Turkey, Taiwan, Russia and Singapore. It said it could cope with the disaster because they have ample manpower and resources.
Caritas Internationalis has contacted Caritas Iran and will work with them to develop an Emergency Appeal to raise the necessary funding, if required.