A magnitude-6.8 earthquake has struck central Myanmar, last Thursday, shaking buildings across the South-East Asian nation and, according to police, damaging several Buddhist temples in the ancient city of Bagan. The quake was felt as far away as Bangkok.
A fire department official from regional capital Magwe said two young girls were killed when a riverbank gave way in Yenanchaung township, south of Chauk.
Bagan is one of Asia’s top attractions and is known as the “city of four million Pagodas”. Holy sites include the Ananda Temple, built in 1091, which was topped with a golden stupa, is now in ruins.
“Some other famous pagodas were damaged during the earthquake,” a tourist police officer from Bagan said, adding some of the damage in the major tourist destination was “serious”.
Myanmar is in a seismically active part of the world where the Indo-Australian Plate runs up against the Eurasian Plate. In March, 2011, at least 74 people were killed in an earthquake in Myanmar near its borders with Thailand and Laos.