The United States announced Wednesday that it stands "ready to help the Iranian people" in the aftermath of a 6.3-magnitude earthquake that struck the country on Tuesday.
"The American people extend condolences to the people of Iran for the devastation that resulted from the recent earthquake and aftershocks in southern Iran, particularly to those whose loved ones were injured or lost their lives," Caitlin Hayden, a spokeswoman for the National Security Council spokeswoman said in a statement. "We are deeply saddened by the loss of life and the destruction that’s been caused by this disaster, and stand ready to help the Iranian people in this time of need."
According to figures released by Iranian media, approximately 850 people were injured and more than 90 villages in the southern province of Bushehr were significantly damaged, with two completely destroyed.
The Bushehr plant, however, was reportedly undamaged by the powerful quake.
The Russian-built plant was designed to withstand an earthquake of a magnitude greater than 8, said Iran's atomic energy chief Fereydoon Abbasi Davani.
In 2003, some 26,000 people were killed by a similarly powerful quake that shook the southeastern city of Bam.
Iran initially rejected direct humanitarian aid offered by the U.S., but later accepted the offer in exchange for a promise to comply with improved monitoring of its nuclear interests, The Hill reported.