Ecuador earthquake death toll rises to nearly 650

 Ecuador-earthquake-death-toll-rises-to-nearly-650.  QUITO, Ecuador, Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa announced the death toll from the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck the country climbed to nearly 650.

The death toll of the magnitude 7.8 earthquake in Ecuador reached 646 people on Saturday, according to President Rafael Correa. An additional 12,492 people were injured and 130 more remain missing after nearly 300 aftershocks and a second 6.5 magnitude quake struck the country. Photo by Ezra Kaplan/UPI | License Photo
















The death toll now stands at 646 people on Saturday as the country registered more then 300 aftershocks after the initial quake struck on April 16.

A second 6.5 magnitude quake also struck the coast of Ecuador on Thursday night, as the aftershock centered around the city of Bahia de Caraquez.

“These have been sad days for the homeland,” Correa said in a TV broadcast,according to The Guardian. “The country is in crisis.”

In addition to the deaths, 12,492 people were injured and 130 more remain missing. The quake also destroyed nearly 7,000 buildings throughout the country.

More than 13,500 rescue workers had arrived to join a massive search and rescue effort as of Tuesday.

Correa also announced on Wednesday that he would raise sales taxes and put a one-time levy on the rich to help pay for reconstruction work, which is likely to cost more than $3 billion.

By Daniel Uria