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The earthquake in Turkey and Syria leaves more than 11,000 dead: it is the deadliest in the last decade


Despite freezing temperatures and aftershocks, rescue teams pulled a 3-year-old boy and a 10-year-old girl alive in two Turkish cities.

By Mehmet Guzel, Ghaith Alsayed and Suzan Fraser —

The Associated Press

More than two days after the deadly 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Turkey and Syria, rescue teams continue to work around the clock to find more survivors among the rubble of thousands of collapsed buildings.

But freezing temperatures and aftershocks complicate rescue efforts, and the death toll continues to rise.

More than 11,100 people died on Wednesday, making the quake the

deadliest in more than a decade

, since one triggered a tsunami in Japan in 2011 that killed nearly 20,000 people.


death toll

has surpassed


and is expected to continue to rise, NBC News reported.

In Turkey, at least 8,574 people have been killed and 40,910 injured, the Turkish Disaster Management Authority said early Wednesday.

At least 8,000 people have been pulled alive from the rubble, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday.

In Syria, the Ministry of Health reported at least 1,262 deaths and 22,085 injuries in government-controlled areas.

In the areas controlled by the rebels, at least 1,280 deaths and more than 2,600 wounded were registered, according to the White Helmets.

An aerial view shows smoke billowing from the scene of collapsed buildings on February 8, 2023 in Hatay, Turkey. Burak Kara / Getty Images

Turkey already has some

60,000 first responders in the quake-hit area,

but the devastation is so widespread that many are still waiting for help.

Amid calls for the government to send more aid to the disaster zone, Erdogan was to travel on Wednesday to the quake epicenter city of Pazarcik and hardest-hit Hatay province.

[They record the miraculous rescue of a baby: her mother gave birth before dying in the rubble of the earthquake in Turkey and Syria]

Two days after the 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck southeastern Turkey and northern Syria,

rescue teams pulled a 3-year-old boy,

Arif Kaan, from the rubble of a collapsed apartment building in Kahramanmaras, a city Turca not far from the epicenter.

With the boy's lower body trapped under concrete slabs and twisted rebar, emergency crews placed a blanket over his torso to protect him from the subzero temperatures while they carefully removed debris, mindful of the possibility of cause another collapse.

Images of rescued children symbolizing drama and hope after the powerful earthquake in Turkey

Feb 7, 202302:16

The boy's father, Ertugrul Kisi, who had been rescued earlier, sobbed as his son was carried out and loaded into an ambulance.

["Dad is here, don't be afraid."

Exciting rescue of a girl buried under the rubble by the earthquake in Turkey and Syria]

“For now, the name of hope in Kahramanmaras is Arif Kaan

,” proclaimed a Turkish television reporter as the dramatic rescue was broadcast to the country.

A few hours later, rescue teams pulled 10-year-old Betul Edis from the rubble of her home in the city of Adiyaman, Turkey.

To applause from onlookers, her grandfather kissed her and spoke softly to her as they loaded her into an ambulance.

But freezing temperatures and aftershocks complicate rescue efforts.

Search teams from more than two dozen countries joined Turkish emergency personnel, and promises of help poured in.

Earthquake in Turkey: Hispanic witnesses narrate the terror experienced when the earth trembled

Feb 8, 202300:39

With the devastation spreading across several cities and towns – some cut off by the ongoing Syrian conflict – the voices crying out among the piles of rubble fell silent and despair grew among those still waiting for help.

In Syria, the quake toppled thousands of buildings and piled more misery in a region ravaged by 12 years of civil war and refugee crisis.

On Monday afternoon, in a town in northwestern Syria, neighbors found a crying newborn still attached to her deceased mother by the umbilical cord.

The baby was the only member of her family to have survived

a building collapse in the small town of Jindires, her relatives told The Associated Press news agency.

In video: They rescue a newborn baby under the rubble left by the strong earthquake in Syria

Feb 7, 202301:02

Turkey hosts millions of war refugees.

The affected area in Syria is divided between government-controlled territory and the last opposition-held enclave of the country, where millions of people depend on humanitarian aid.

[Earthquake exacerbates suffering of displaced Syrians]

Up to 23 million people could be affected in the quake-hit region, according to Adelheid Marschang, senior emergency officer at the World Health Organization, who called it a "crisis upon multiple crises."

Many survivors in Turkey have had to sleep in cars, out in the open or in government shelters.

“We don't have a tent, we don't have a stove, we don't have anything.

Our children are very bad.

We are all getting wet in the rain and our children are out in the open,” Aysan Kurt, 27, told the AP.

"We did not die from hunger or from the earthquake, but we will freeze to death from the cold."

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Erdogan said 13 million of the country's 85 million people were affected, and declared a state of emergency in 10 provinces.

Some 380,000 people have taken refuge in government shelters or hotels, according to authorities.

In Syria, aid efforts have been hampered by the ongoing war and the isolation of the rebel-held border region, surrounded by Russian-backed government forces.

Syria itself is an international pariah under war-related Western sanctions.

The United Nations stated that it was "exploring all avenues" to get supplies into the rebel-held northwest.

The region sits on major fault lines and is frequently hit by earthquakes.

Some 18,000 people died in earthquakes of the same intensity that struck northwestern Turkey in 1999.

Source: telemundo

All news articles on 2023-02-08

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