Mashhad, Iran (Reuters): Strong earthquake of 6.1 magnitude struck near the holy city of Mashhad in Iran's northeast on Wednesday, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).
According to USGS, the earthquake occurred 76 km (miles) east-southeast of the city and at a depth of 33 km.
Iranian media reported that the quake happened at 10:40 a.m. local time (0610 GMT) and had shaken Mashhad and cities around it. Phone lines in some of the affected area were disrupted.
There were no immediate casualty reports but state news agency IRNA quoted emergency services spokesman Mojtaba Khaledi as saying there were fears that casualties in villages and small towns could be high. Red Crescent teams and emergency services had been deployed to the area, he said.