More than 1,000 have been killed after an earthquake struck central Nepal.

The Nepalese government declared a state of emergency after the 7.8 magnitude quake struck in the area between Kathmandu and the city of Pokhara.

Extensive damage has been reported from the area around the epicentre of the earthquake, but little information has yet to surface, and the death toll may yet rise further.

A number of countries around the world have offered assistance, and the US has said that it is sending a disaster response team to the country and has released an initial $1m (£0.7m) for initial relief efforts.

British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said:

“My thoughts are with the people of Nepal and everyone affected by the terrible loss of life and widespread damage caused by the earthquake.

“We are in close contact with the Nepalese government. The British Embassy in Nepal is offering our assistance to the authorities and is providing consular assistance to British Nationals.”

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