At least 13 people were killed and four others went missing in Tibet after a powerful earthquake struck neighbouring Nepal on Saturday, officials said.

A massive 7.9-magnitude quake, followed by a second 7.0-magnitude quake left over 1,500 people dead in Nepal, Xinhua news agency reported.

The quake also strongly jolted the neighbouring regions in Tibet.

Seven of the 13 people killed were from Nyalam county and the rest six were from Gyirong. Four residents in Nyalam were missing. Both counties are about 40 km from the epicentre.

The quake also damaged buildings and roads and cut off telecommunications in the two counties and several neighbouring regions.

Chen Quanguo, the Communist Party of China’s chief of Tibet, ordered the evacuation of people in the quake-hit regions to avoid further deaths.

About 600 border guards were currently involved in the rescue operation.

Over 3,000 firefighters and 87 sniffer dogs have been readied to go to the quake-struck areas.

The authorities are sending tents, quilts, clothes, medicine and bottled water to the regions.