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Armenian Families Still Feel Impact Of 1988 Earthquake

Twenty-six years ago, on December 7, 1988, a 6.8 magnitude earthquake struck northwestern Armenia, then part of the Soviet Union. The catastrophe killed some 31,000 people, injured 130,000, and left many more homeless. The town of Gyumri, then known as Leninakan, was the hardest hit, and has yet to recover. Thousands of people moved away, but others who lost their homes lacked the resources to leave, and were forced to find makeshift housing. Today, about 600 families continue to live in shacks or Soviet-era wagons without running water or power. (Text and photos by Anthony Georgieff)