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Earthquake in Turkey and Syria. How many people died – balance of casualties, injuries and destruction [8 lutego 2023]

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The death toll from the earthquake that hit southeastern Turkey and northwestern Syria on Monday topped 12,000 on Wednesday. In total, there are about 55,000 injured. Search and rescue operations are still underway in both countries. Aid organizations say the death toll is likely to rise as many people are still trapped under the rubble. In addition, weather conditions make rescue operations difficult.

IN Turkey the death toll rose to at least 9,057, and about 50,000 others were injured.

Earlier in the day, the president of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan during a visit to the disaster-stricken areas near the epicenter of Monday’s earthquake, he spoke of more than 8,000 dead.

Turkish authorities also reported that day that 5,775 buildings had collapsed across the country. According to the latest data, more than 79,000 people are involved in rescue operations, including 3,200 from 65 countries around the world who sent their rescue teams to help, the government agency for emergency situations and natural disasters (AFAD) said. There are also teams from Poland among the rescuers.

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Monday’s cataclysm is associated with the tragedies of tens of thousands of peoplePAP/EPA/SEDAT SUNA

Turkey. Rescue operation after the earthquakePAP/EPA/SEDAT SUNA

Erdogan’s visit to devastated areas

Erdogan traveled to the earthquake-ravaged province of Kahramanmaras in the southern part of the country on Wednesday to inspect rescue operations, Turkey’s Anatolia news agency reported. As reported by the Washington Post, the leader admitted to the state’s failure to respond immediately after the quake, but promised that no one would be “left on the street.”

After visiting the Kahramanmaras province, including the Pazarcik district, the Turkish president will travel to the bordering Syria Hatay province, also devastated by the cataclysm.

Erdogan announced state of emergencywhich is to apply for 90 days in 10 provinces of the country.

“From today there is no hope in Malatya”

World Health Organization Spokesperson (WHO) Margaret Harris stated that “for some time” it will be difficult to estimate the size of the losses, and at this point the most important thing is to save the wounded from death. According to experts, the 72-hour window during which it is still possible to save living people from under the rubble is slowly closing.

The survivors of the catastrophe are looking for shelter, which is all the more necessary as Turkey is currently hit by a wave of frost. Temporary tents are erected because the scale of the damage is so great that it is difficult to find a roofed building to hide in. At the stadium in the city of Kahramanmaras, the capital of the province of the same name, the bodies of the victims of the disaster lie covered with blankets.

Journalist Ozel Pikal described by phone to the AP the situation in the Turkish city of Malatya, where the bodies of the dead lay side by side on the ground, covered with blankets, awaiting funeral services. He stressed that he believed some of the victims had frozen to death as the temperature dropped to 6 degrees Celsius below zero overnight. “Today is not an easy day because from today there is no hope in Malatya,” said Pikal. “No one comes out of the rubble alive,” he added. He also said there was a shortage of lifeguards and the cold was hampering the efforts of volunteers and authorities. Impassable roads and destruction in the region also hamper work.

The death toll in Syria

In areas of Syria controlled by the Damascus regime, the death toll has risen to 1,262 and more than 2,000 people have been injured.

At least 1,730 people were killed in rebel-held areas. More than 2,600 are injured, the White Helmets (Syrian Civil Defense) civil defense organization said.

“This balance is expected to increase significantly as more than 50 hours after the earthquake, hundreds of families are still trapped under the rubble,” the organization said on Wednesday morning.

In total, this means that the number of people killed by the earthquake in Turkey and Syria reached 12,000 on Wednesday evening.

Syria. Earthquake damagePAP/EPA/SEDAT SUNA

The ongoing rescue operation in both countries is hampered by freezing weather. The devastation caused by the cataclysm extends over 330 kilometers – from the Syrian city of Hama to the Turkish Diyarbakir. WHO representatives point out that the situation of the people affected by the earthquake is the worst in Syria, devastated by war and a multi-layered crisis lasting nearly 12 years. In their opinion, the situation in regions where the media do not reach may be particularly difficult.

Image of the destruction in Iskenderun in southern TurkeyPAP/EPA/ERDEM SAHIN

Earthquake in Turkey and Syria

The epicenter of the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit southeastern Turkey and northwestern Syria on Monday morning was in Turkey’s Kahramanmaras province. Less than 12 hours later, a second 7.7-magnitude quake occurred several dozen kilometers to the north. Both phenomena were accompanied by a series of over 100 aftershocks.

The affected region of south-eastern Turkey and north-western Syria is seismically active and tremors are frequent. However, the latter is the most powerful cataclysm of this type in this region in recent times. In 1999, an earthquake in Izmit, Turkey, killed 17,000-18,000 people. Measurements showed that the quake had a magnitude of 7.6.

The deadliest earthquake in the history of seismic measurements was recorded in 1976 in the Chinese province of Tangshan. The official figures of the authorities spoke of 250,000 victims. They were probably greatly underestimated, because some sources gave the number of people killed as high as 650,000. The earthquake in Tangshan had an official magnitude of 7.5, although other measurements put it as high as 8.2. In turn, the magnitude of 9.5 was the strongest recorded quake in history, in 1960, in Chile. More than 1,650 people died then.

Main photo source: PAP/EPA/SEDAT SUNA

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