Rescuers rush to Turkey and Syria after a quake claims 4,000 lives.


Turkey’s ADANA: To find more survivors among the rubble after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake that killed more than 4,000 people and overturned thousands of structures across a vast territory, rescuers in Turkey and war-torn Syria searched through the icy night into Tuesday.


Authorities anticipated that as rescuers searched through the tangles of metal and concrete scattered across the region plagued by Syria’s 12-year civil war and refugee crisis, the death toll from Monday’s early-morning earthquake and its aftershocks would continue to rise.


As first responders struggled in the rain and snow, survivors shouted for assistance from among the rubble mounds. The area was shaken by more earthquakes, including one almost as strong as the first one. As anxious relatives awaited word of loved ones, workers gently removed concrete slabs and reached for bodies.

“My grandson is one and a half. Please provide a hand to them. They were on the 12th floor,” Imran Bahur sobbed Monday in front of her demolished apartment complex in the Turkish city of Adana.

In Turkey and Syria, tens of thousands of people who were made homeless had to spend the night outside in the cold. People sought sanctuary in malls, stadiums, mosques, and community centers in the Turkish city of Gaziantep, the provincial capital, about 33 kilometers (20 miles) from the epicenter. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the president of Turkey, proclaimed seven days of national mourning.

President of the United States, Joe Biden, contacted Erdogan to offer his condolences and support to the NATO ally. The White House announced that it would send search and rescue personnel to assist Turkey.

Residents of Damascus and Beirut rushed into the streets in response to the earthquake, which was felt as far away as Cairo and was centered in the province of Kahramanmaras in southeast Turkey.

It added to the region’s extreme hardship over the past ten years. The area is split between territory under government control on the Syrian side and the final opposition-held outpost encircled by government forces with Russian support. Millions of civil war refugees currently reside in Turkey.

According to a statement from the White Helmets, an opposition emergency response group, hundreds of families are still buried under the wreckage in the rebel-held area. Approximately 4 million people displaced by the war from other regions of the country are crammed into space. Many people reside in structures that military bombardments have already damaged.

Rescue workers reported that injured patients swiftly filled up overcrowded medical facilities. According to the SAMS medical group, some facilities, including a maternity facility, had to be evacuated.

According to Orhan Tatar, a representative of Turkey’s emergency management organization, more than 7,800 persons were saved across ten provinces.

Major fault lines run through the area, which frequently experiences earthquakes. Similarly, strong earthquakes that struck northwest Turkey in 1999 claimed over 18,000 lives.

As determined by the U.S. Geological Survey, the depth of Monday’s earthquake was 18 kilometers (11 miles). A few hours later, a 7.5 magnitude earthquake struck more than 100 kilometers (60 miles) away, probably due to the previous one.

According to a video of the incident, the second shock caused a multistory apartment building in the Turkish city of Sanliurfa to tumble onto the street in a cloud of dust as onlookers shouted.

In a large area stretching from Aleppo and Hama’s Syrian cities to Diyarbakir, Turkey, more than 330 kilometers (200 miles) to the northeast, thousands of structures were believed to have collapsed.

According to authorities, more than 5,600 buildings have been damaged in Turkey alone. Hospitals were destroyed in the city of Iskenderun, and one even collapsed.

According to Dr. Steven Godby, a specialist in natural hazards at Nottingham Trent University, the time that rescuers have to free trapped people could be shortened by bitterly cold weather. He claimed rescue operations would be made more difficult by operating in conflict-ridden areas.

Numerous nations offered assistance, including the European Union and NATO, search and rescue teams, medical supplies, and financial contributions. The overwhelming majority were for Turkey, with promises of aid to the Syrian government from Russia and Israel. Still, it was unclear if any would get to the devastated rebel-held area in the northwest.

The Syrian Civil Defense, an opposition group, called the situation in the enclave “disastrous.”

The Idlib province and the opposition-held region have been subject to ongoing government and Russian bombardment for years. Everything from food to medical supplies comes from Turkey, and the part is dependent on this humanitarian flow.

According to Stephane Dujarric, a spokesman for the United Nations, 224 structures in northwest Syria were destroyed, and at least 325 others, including humanitarian warehouses, were damaged. The U.N. has been helping 2.7 million people each month through cross-border aid.



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