18/04/2016 6:44 AM AEST | Updated 18/04/2016 6:44 AM AEST

Photos From Ecuador Show Devastation After The Deadly Earthquake

It was the most powerful earthquake in the South American nation in decades.

Ecuador is reeling from a powerful 7.8-magnitude earthquake that struck the country on Saturday, killing at least 235 people and injuring over 1,500. It is the worst quake to hit Ecuador in decades, and threatens to further hurt the nation's already struggling economy.

A state of emergency was declared in provinces across the nation, while areas along the country's coast -- where there was briefly a tsunami warning following the quake -- have been especially hard hit. Mayor Gabriel Alcivar of the coastal town of Pedernales told local media of collapsed buildings and devastation, saying that the town desperately needed food and medicine.  

Aid groups including the Ecuador Red Cross and World Vision are rallying to help those affected by the quake, and nations including Mexico and Venezuela have pledged to send teams and supplies. Skype has also offered free calls to landlines and cell phones in the nation for "the next few days."

Ecuador's government has mobilized over 13,000 of its security forces following the disaster. 

The photos below give a glimpse at the extent of the damage in the nation, and the efforts of rescuers searching for those still trapped in the rubble.

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