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Strong 5.9-Quake Kills 12 in Haiti, Injures 180


Residents stand looking at a collapsed school damaged bya magnitude 5.9 earthquake the night before, in Gros Morne, Haiti, Oct. 7, 2018.

Officials in Haiti are urging people to stay calm Sunday after a strong 5.9-magnitude earthquake shook the impoverished country.

Saturday's quake killed at least 12 and injured more than 180. It was centered close to the northern city of Port-a Paix, but was felt across the country.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported Sunday afternoon that a 5.2-magnitude aftershock rattled the same region of Port-de-Paix, in northern Haiti.

President Jovenel Moise and Prime Minister Prime Minister Jean-Henry Ceantwas were in the disaster-stricken city Sunday to coordinate relief efforts.

"I congratulate the citizens for their show of solidarity and support," Moise tweeted.

Reports say a hospital, community center and a number of homes were destroyed.

"I was watching TV, the president was talking and all of a sudden I felt my chair shaking," Marie Claude Sylverin told VOA Creole. "I thought it was our dog doing that, but then my daughter asked me, Mom, did you feel the earthquake?' and that's when I ran outside to see what was going on."

Another man told VOA he was working on his computer when all of a sudden the desk started to shake. He said at first he did not know what was causing the shaking.

"I ran outside and saw all these people in the street and I realized -- that was an earthquake," he said.

Haiti has never fully recovered from the 7.1-magnitude earthquake in 2010 that killed more than 200,000 people and left 1 million people homeless.

Many people whose homes were destroyed are still living in tent cities.

VOA Creole's Roney Innocente contributed to this report.