Header Ads Widget

Earthquake: Death Toll Rises To Over 16,000 In Turkey, Syria

More than 16,000 people have been confirmed dead from the devastating earthquake that hit Turkey and Syria on Monday.

Turkey’s death toll has risen to 12,873 while the most recent figure from Syria stands at 3,162.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) had warned that the death toll may reach 20,000 as rescuers sift through the rubble of thousands of collapsed buildings amid freezing weather conditions, faced with the risk of aftershocks.

The earthquake which was felt in many neighbouring countries is one of the strongest to hit the region in more than 100 years.

Experts say the survival window for those trapped under the debris or otherwise unable to obtain basic necessities is closing rapidly.

More than 90 percent of earthquake survivors were rescued within the first three days and it is now just over 72 hours since the first earthquake struck.

“The first 72 hours are considered to be critical,” CBS news quoted Steven Godby, a natural hazards expert at Nottingham Trent University in England, to have said.

“The survival ratio on average within 24 hours is 74%, after 72 hours it is 22% and by the fifth day it is 6%.”

There has been outrage in Turkey over the government’s “slow response” to the disaster.

On Wednesday, President Recep Erdogan of Turkey admitted to “shortcomings”, saying the state initially “had some problems” at airports and on roads, but insisting the situation was now “under control”.

He had earlier announced a three-month state of emergency across the affected 10 provinces in Turkey to enable rapid search-and-rescue operations.

Meanwhile, analysts fear that Syria may be sidelined from receiving as much international help as Turkey.

The Syrian regime is shunned by most Western countries owing to its brutal suppression of an uprising in 2011.

What began as protests against President Bashar al-Assad’s regime quickly escalated into a full-scale war between Syria—backed by Russia and Iran—and anti-government rebel groups—backed by the United States, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and others in the region.

Syria has used the earthquake as a reason to call for sanctions against it to be lifted even as international bodies such as the WHO assured that aid would be delivered to the conflict zone.

Post a Comment