US, Turkey, France and Germany among those offering to assist Morocco after quake

People dig graves for people who died, during an earthquake, in Moulay Brahim village, near Marrakesh, Morocco, September 9, 2023. (AP Photo/Mosa'ab Elshamy)
People dig graves for people who died, during an earthquake, in Moulay Brahim village, near Marrakesh, Morocco, September 9, 2023. (AP Photo/Mosa'ab Elshamy)

US President Joe Biden is among world leaders expressing sadness at the devastation facing the North African kingdom of Morocco after a powerful earthquake shook Marrakesh and its environs and killed more than 1,000 people.

Biden says that US officials have been in contact with Morocco to offer help.

“We are working expeditiously to ensure American citizens in Morocco are safe, and stand ready to provide any necessary assistance for the Moroccan people. The United States stands by Morocco and my friend King Mohammed VI at this difficult moment.”

Turkey, which lost tens of thousands of people in a massive earthquake earlier this year, is among those proposing assistance. France and Germany, with large populations of people with Moroccan origins, also offer to help.

Elsewhere, Qatar offers to “provide all necessary assistance to the affected areas to support their recovery from the effects of the earthquake,” according to a statement by Qatar News Agency. The Emirates News Agency reported that Dubai police rescue teams were dispatching aid. King Abdullah II of Jordan also extended an offer of help.

Pope Francis sends a telegram of condolences, expressing his “profound solidarity” with those affected by the catastrophe. Francis visited Morocco in 2019.

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