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Turkey-Syria earthquake: Rescuers press on into third day as death toll crosses 9000

Rescuers worked into the night in Turkey and Syria following Monday's devastating earthquake but cold weather means time is short for possible survivors

Our Web Desk Published 08.02.23, 09:43 AM
Cold weather means time is short for possible survivors. Almost 8,000 people have been killed

Cold weather means time is short for possible survivors. Almost 8,000 people have been killed Deutsche Welle

  • Quake that struck Turkiye and Syria is deadliest in world in more than 10 years, as confirmed death toll surpasses 9,000, reports, reports PTI

Rescuers from Turkey and Syria, and increasingly from around the world as international assistance arrived, continue to search the rubble for survivors early Wednesday after major earthquakes in Turkey and Syria, reports Deutsche Welle


Officials say the number of dead was at 7,926 in total.

Turkey's Vice President Fuat Oktay said late on Tuesday that 5,894 people had been killed and 34,810 injured in Turkey, as search operations continued in freezing winter temperatures, approaching 48 hours since the first major quake.

In Syria, state news agency SANA reported that at least 812 people had been killed and 1,449 injured in government-controlled areas. The White Helmets organization coordinating rescue efforts in rebel-held territory said at least 1,220 people were killed and 2,600 injured.

All the responsible authorities continue to warn that the figures could continue to rise and that the chances of finding survivors under the rubble is diminishing as time passes.

North Korea's Kim sends condolences to Syria

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un expressed his condolences to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad following the earthquakes, according to South Korea's Yonhap news agency on Wednesday.

North Korea is a major ally of the Assad government, with the two countries maintaining close military ties. South Korea, meanwhile, does not have diplomatic relations with the Syrian regime.

Summary of Turkey-Syria earthquake events on Tuesday

Rescue workers deployed from all over the world rushed to the scene on Tuesday, with many of the teams heading for Turkey.

Teams from South Korea to the US to Bosnia-Herzegovina or Germany or the UAE to name but a few set off to try to join the operations before all hopes of finding people alive faded.

The United States Agency for International Development, or USAID, said two of its assistance teams will arrive in Turkey by Wednesday morning local time.

German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser said some 40 rescuers from German charity International Search and Rescue (ISAR Germany) were in Turkey, as well as several members of the German federal police force. Another specialist team from the THW rescue agency had to delay its departure on Tuesday because of a winter storm halting their flight.

People tried to organize rapid assistance on a more local level, too.

In Berlin, Turkish and Kurdish community groups coordinated to collect, sort, and send aid donations from the large Turkish diaspora. Similar operations were underway in Frankfurt and Munich.

The United Nations has released $25 million (€23 million) from its emergency fund in humanitarian assistance to the people affected by the earthquake in Turkey and Syria.

EU Crisis Commissioner Janez Lenarcic said 27 search and rescue teams from 19 European countries have been mobilized to search for survivors in Turkey. Lenarcic said medical teams were also being sent to help, together with 1150 rescuers and 70 rescue dogs.

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