Middle East

More than 15000 killed in Turkey-Syria earthquake

ANKARA — More than 15000 people have died following a catastrophic earthquake that jolted Turkey and Syria on Monday.

As many as 12,391 people have been killed and 62,914 others have been injured in Turkey, Anadolu Agency reported citing Turkey’s disaster management agency, AFAD.

A total of 1,262 people have died in government-controlled areas of Syria while 1,730 people have died in rebel-held regions in the northwest. The total number of injured people in Syria has reached 5,108 in both rebel and government-controlled areas, CNN reported.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday admitted to “shortcomings” in earthquake response. He stressed that the weather conditions have added to the magnitude of the destruction caused by the earthquake.

Erdogan made the remarks during his visit near the epicentre of Monday’s earthquake.

“Of course, there are shortcomings. The conditions are obvious. It is not possible to be prepared for such a disaster. We will not leave any of our citizens uncared for,” CNN quoted Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as saying.

Erdogan said, “No doubt, our job was not easy. As of now, a total of 21,200 personnel, including soldiers, gendarmes, and police, are working in Hatay.”

Erdogan said that the state has mobilized all its resources. He said that 6,444 buildings collapsed due to the two earthquakes of 7.7 and 7.6 magnitudes that jolted the nation on Monday.

“We have mobilized all our resources. The state is working with municipalities, especially AFAD (Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency), with all its means,” Anadolu Agency quoted Erdogan as saying.

Turkey on Tuesday announced a three-month state of emergency in the quake-hit regions, as per the Anadolu Agency report. Turkey is observing seven days of mourning after the devastating quakes. As per the news report, over 13 million people have been affected by earthquakes.