Iran Calls off Search for Quake Survivors After Intense Rescue Efforts

Iran's gold medallist Kianoush Rostami poses on the podium after the men's weightlifting 85kg event during the Rio 2016 Olympics Games in Rio de Janeiro

Iran's gold medallist Kianoush Rostami poses on the podium after the men's weightlifting 85kg event during the Rio 2016 Olympics Games in Rio de Janeiro

Survivors, many left homeless by the 7.3 magnitude quake that struck villages and towns in a mountainous area bordering Iraq, battled overnight temperatures just above freezing and faced another bleak day in need of food and water.

As many as 3,950 people have been injured, Iran's Tasnim news agency said.

In a televised interview on Monday, IRGC Commander Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari said his forces are working in close cooperation with the Army to help victims of the massive natural disaster in western Iran.

Kermanshah, an nearly entirely Kurdish province nestled in the Zagros Mountains that run along the border with Iraq, suffered all of Iran's fatalities from quake that shook 14 of the country's 31 provinces.

At least 14 provinces in Iran were affected. Meshkat told Reuters, "More people will die because of the cold".

"Today, we sent our ambulances to villages in areas affected by the quake to help people rescued yesterday, including changing their bandages", he said.

Three days of mourning have been ordered for those in Kermanshah.

As of Monday, over 100 medics have been sent to devastated areas of Iran.

Rouhani Tuesday visited the town of Sar-e Pol-e Zahab, worst hit by the quake.

The country's Red Crescent relief agency reported that emergency shelters outside the hardest hit areas are prepared to take in thousands of people, but because of blocked roads and a lack of water and electricity, relief work is being hampered.

Yesterday, Iranian officials said they were setting up relief camps for the displaced and that 22,000 tents, 52,000 blankets and tonnes of food and water had been distributed.

In 1990, a 7.4-magnitude quake in northern Iran killed 40,000 people, injured 300,000 and left half a million homeless, reducing dozens of towns and almost 2,000 villages to rubble.

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