Earthquakes in Turkey and Syria: more than 1,500 dead and many injured

Spread the love

Earthquakes in Turkey and Syria: more than 1500 dead and many injured

People gathered near the rubble of a building that collapsed following two earthquakes in Turkey ( our photo) and in Syria.

More than 1,500 people were killed in southern Turkey and neighboring Syria by a powerful 7.8 magnitude quake, followed hours later by a very strong 7.5 magnitude aftershock, shaking recorded up to ;in Greenland.

This assessment, very provisional, should increase, a very large number of people remaining trapped under the rubble. The snow, which is falling in abundance, and the drop in temperatures, expected in the evening and tomorrow, will make the situation of people finding themselves homeless, as well as the work of the relief workers, even more difficult.

The first tremor occurred at 4:17 a.m. local time, in the district of Pazarcik, in the province of Kahramanmaras (southeast), about 60 km as the crow flies from the Syrian border.

Dozens of aftershocks followed, before a new earthquake of magnitude 7.5, at 10:24 GMT, still in southeastern Turkey, 4 km southeast of the town of Ekinozu.< /p>

After the second earthquake, Tulin, a young woman in her thirties living in Kayapinar, in the district of Diyarbakir, tells of her fear of returning home.< /p>

I strongly felt it because I live on the top floor. We walked out in a panic. It was almost the same as this morning. I'm so scared now, I can't go back to my apartment, I don't know what will happen now, she told AFP.

In northern Syria, nearly 592 people lost their lives and more than a thousand others were injured, according to provisional reports communicated by state media and rescue workers in rebel areas.

In Turkey, where the epicenter of the earthquake is located, at least 912 people were killed and more than 5,385 injured, in seven provinces, according to data relayed by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who reported of 2818 collapsed buildings.

Residents gather in front of the rubble of a building that collapsed in the Azmarin village, near the Turkish border, in northern Idlib province, Syria.

My sister and her three children are under the rubble. Also her husband, father-in-law and mother-in-law. Seven members of our family are under the debris, said Muhittin Orakci, who was waiting for rescue operations outside a collapsed building in Diyarbakir, the large Kurdish-majority city in southeastern Turkey.

The toll is likely to change rapidly given the number of collapsed buildings in the affected cities, such as Adana, Gaziantep, Sanliurfa and Diyarbakir in particular.

In Iskenderun and Adiyaman, it was the public hospitals that collapsed under the effect of the earthquake, which occurred in the middle of the night at 4:17 a.m. (local time), according to the American seismological institute USGS, at a depth of #x27;about 17.9 kilometers.

Start of the widget. Skip widget?End of widget. Back to top of widget?

The epicenter is in Pazarcik district, Kahramanmaras province (southeast), about 60 km as the crow flies from the Syrian border.

This earthquake is the largest in Turkey since the earthquake of August 17, 1999, which caused the death of 17,000 people, including a thousand in Istanbul. Fifty aftershocks were recorded in Turkey, according to Afad.

Civilians and fighters sift through rubble of a collapsed building in the town of Jandaris in the countryside of Syria's northwestern city of Afrin, in the rebel-held part of Aleppo province, early on February 6, 2023.< /p>

Bad weather in this mountainous region paralyzes the main airports around Diyarbakir and Malatya, where it continues to snow very heavily, leaving the haggard survivors in their pajamas outside in the cold.

We hear voices here and there. We believe that maybe 200 people are under the rubble, said a rescue worker dispatched to a destroyed building in Diyarbakir, according to images broadcast on the NTV channel.

Faced with this desolation, the inhabitants everywhere are mobilizing and trying to clear the ruins with their bare hands, using buckets to evacuate the debris.

The Turkish President, whose reaction to this tragedy will most likely be closely monitored before the May 14 election, which promises to be very tight, called for national unity.

We hope that we will get out of this disaster together as quickly as possible and with the least possible damage, he tweeted.

Gas pipelines supplying the region have also been affected and the provinces of Hatay, Kahramanmaras and Gaziantep are deprived of gas, said the public body Botas.

The tremors, felt throughout the south-east of the country, were also felt in Lebanon and Cyprus, according to AFP correspondents, as well as in Iraqi Kurdistan in the north of the country in Erbil and Douk, but no casualties were reported.

Victims are rushed to hospital in Bab al-Hawa, Syria.

Our teams are on alert to rescue survivors, the Syrian White Helmets, rescuers engaged in rebel areas in Syria, also said on Twitter.

In Syria, according to Health Ministry figures reported by the official Sana news agency, 371 people were killed and 1,089 injured in government areas.

The White Helmets, rescue workers in rebel areas, reported 221 dead and 419 injured, adding that this assessment was provisional.

Syrian rescue workers and civilians search for victims and survivors in the countryside of northern Syria's rebel-held province of Idlib on the border with Turkey.

One hundred and forty-seven civilians died and more than 340 were injured according to a provisional report, in the province of Idlib and the surroundings of Aleppo, in the north of the country, announced the White Helmets on Twitter, adding to expect a significant rise in the number of casualties, with hundreds of families still lying under the rubble.

In a statement, the White Helmets declared these disaster areas and called on international humanitarian organizations to intervene quickly to help the local population.

The earthquake caused scenes of panic in northern Syria where residents rushed outside, on foot or by car, despite the torrential rains, as well as in neighboring Lebanon where the tremors were strongly felt.< /p>

At Al-Rahma hospital in the rebel-held Idlib region, we received 30 martyrs and 100 wounded, the ;AFP Dr Majid Ibrahim.

A man carries an injured child in the town of Jandaris in the countryside of Afrin city in northwestern Syria.

The European Union, including many Member States have offered their help to the populations of the devastated regions, have started to send rescue teams.

We follow, shocked, the news of the earthquake in the border region between Turkey and Syria. The death toll continues to rise. We mourn with the families and tremble for those buried, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz tweeted.

The United States, Russia, Israel and Ukraine have also offered their aid, as well as Greece, whose relations with Ankara are stormy, which has announced that it will provide assistance immediately.

Azerbaijan, a brother country of Turkey, has announced the immediate dispatch of 370 rescuers, and India reported dispatching rescue and medical teams.

Two men walk past a heavily damaged building in the town of Zardana, in the countryside of Idlib province, northeastern western Syria.

According to a statement issued by the Kremlin, Putin offered Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan his sincere condolences and assured that Russia stands ready to provide the help needed. In another statement, addressed to Bashar Al-Assad, he expressed his sadness and offered all necessary assistance from Moscow after this disaster.

Turkey is located on the #x27;one of the most active seismic zones in the world.

At the end of November, a magnitude 6.1 earthquake struck northwestern Turkey, causing around 50 injuries and limited damage, according to the Turkish emergency services.