Rescuers still finding survivors after Turkiye-Syria quake toll hits 42,000

ANKARA, 18 Feb 2023:

Three survivors in southwestern Turkiye were pulled from the rubble yesterday – 11 days after twin earthquakes devastated swathes of southern Turkiye and northern Syria.

The three rescued people had spent 260 hours trapped under debris in the city of Antakya, one of the hardest hit by the magnitude 7.7 and 7.6 quakes that claimed the lives of over 38,000 in Turkiye and around 4,000 in Syria.

Mehmet Ali Sakiroglu, 26, and Mustafa Avci, 34, were pulled alive from a collapsed building in a northwestern district of the city while at roughly the same time, in a neighbouring district, rescue teams freed Osman Halebiye, a 12-year-old boy from a Syrian family.

The three survivors had spent 261 hours under the rubble, almost 11 days.

Seven victims of the twin quakes who were sheltering in the central city of Konya, in central Anatolia, died yesterday after a fire broke out in the house where they were staying

Turkiye’s disaster management authority, Afad, reported a death toll of 38,044 by midnight on Thursday although the true number of deaths is expected to be around 100,000.

Over 100,000 were injured by the temblors while over 200,000 people have fled the affected provinces.

The earthquakes struck near Kahramanmaras and Gaziantep in southeast Turkiye, and affected more than 13 million people in 10 provinces spanning an area larger than Portugal.

– EFE