Thu. Mar 30th, 2023


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Children rescued from earthquake rubble after nearly 200 hours

2 min read

Turkey: Multiple buildings damaged after earthquake in Hatay

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Rescue workers in Turkey and Syria have continued to recover survivors from earthquake rubble nearly 200 hours after they first became trapped. Volunteers discovered a two-year-old girl 159 hours after she was encased in concrete debris on Sunday, February 12. A 10-year-old was also found 12 hours earlier with a mother and her newborn son found at the 90-hour mark. Crews have continued to work around the clock in search efforts, with additional rescues made this morning, but the chances of new “miracle” rescues are quickly shrinking.

A magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck Turkey and Syria on Monday causing widespread devastation. In the days that followed huge rescue efforts have ensued, with adults and children pulled from beneath the rubble.

Search teams recovered more civilians this morning, with a father and daughter discovered beneath the rubble of Hatay province. A video from the scene showed the two barely moving and caked in dust as they were stretchered away from the building.

Their relieved rescuers celebrated with hugs, and the survivors were loaded into ambulances and taken to hospital.

Another rescue saw workers able to pull 40-year-old Sibel Kaya from the rubble in Gaziantep 170 hours after the earthquakes rocked the city.

The Ankara-based Anadolu agency celebrated “another miracle rescue” as Erengul Onder, 60, was rescued from the rubble after 166 hours.

She was discovered in the Besni district of the Turkish province of Adiyaman.

The window for finding survivors in the rubble has thinned significantly one week after the first earthquakes hit, and organisers are on the verge of concluding rescue operations.

A United Nations aid official has said the rescue phase is now “coming to a close”.

Speaking from Aleppo, Syria, UN aid chief Martin Griffiths said authorities would instead focus on providing for survivors.

He said authorities would now need to provide them with shelter, food, schooling arrangements, and healthcare.

Mr Griffiths also warned that the death toll could “double or more”.

The latest reports from Turkey and Syria estimate that more than 36,000 people have died.

Turkish authorities with the Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) reported 31,643 deaths.

Syria has reported 4,614, split across the country’s government and rebel-held regions.

In Syria’s rebel-held northwest, near the earthquake epicentre, the White Helmets rescue charity estimates that approximately 3,200 people have died.

Health officials with Bashar Al-Assad’s government estimate that at least 1,414 people have died.

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