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Mexico earthquake: London community launches campaign to help those affected by disaster

The natural disaster, which took place on Tuesday (September 19), is the second major earthquake to hit Mexico in two weeks

A powerful earthquake in Mexico has left more than 200 people dead, thousands injured and dozens of buildings destroyed.

The magnitude 7.1 quake, which mostly affected Mexico City and surrounding areas, hit the country on Tuesday (September 19) at around 1pm local time.

Hundreds of volunteers and emergency teams are now on the streets, working tirelessly to find trapped survivors.

Rescuers work in the rubble after a magnitude 7.1 earthquake struck on September 19, 2017 in Mexico City(Image: Getty Images South America)

Members of the Mexican community in the UK, supported by London -based group Justice Mexico Now (JMN), have launched a campaign to help those affected.

Lila Caballero, founding member of JMN, told getwestlondon: "Mexico is just recovering from a huge earthquake in some of the most impoverished areas in the south west of the country.

"A lot of people were already living in poverty and they lost absolutely everything."

Initially, the donation campaign was set up to "show solidarity" with the victims of the 8.1 magnitude quake that hit southern regions of Mexico earlier this month.

When the second earthquake struck central Mexico on Tuesday (September 19), the organisation decided to reopen the online donation page .

Ms Caballero said: "I think it is very important for people to donate because September proved to be quite a rough month of the entire world."

"Whatever we raise in the next week we will send to a search and rescue brigade called 'Los Topos'," she added.

The earthquake caused multiple fatalities, destroyed buildings and knocked out power throughout the capita(Image: Getty Images South America)

The brigade, which emerged after Mexico's deadliest earthquake in 1985, has volunteered in multiple natural disasters all over the world, including in Nepal .

Ms Caballero said: "Donating to 'Los Topos' kind of ensures that the money will reach people working on the ground where the help is most needed.

"Corruption is a big issue in Mexico so we decided to raise money that will go directly to civil society and grassroots movements operating in the affected areas."

The group has so far raised just more than £3,000 of its £10,000 target.

As someone who is from Mexico City herself, Ms Caballero said that the Mexican community in the capital is in "shock".

Relief efforts have been set up in London to help victims(Image: Getty Images South America)

She said: "It is just shocking to see your city, your home town, flattened.

"One of the worse hit neighbourhoods is where my family lives so it is quite shocking to see the images and recognising the places."

But even though the event is "heartbreaking", Ms Cabellero has "hope" and feels "a lot of pride in seeing how people have come out to help."

World leaders, including Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn, have expressed their solidarity with the people in the country.

Labour leader Corbyn wrote on Twitter: "My thoughts are with all those affected by today's earthquake in Mexico."

You can find out more about the initiative and donate here

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