Death Toll From Turkey, Syria Quake Rises Above 5,000

Death Toll From Turkey, Syria Quake Rises Above 5,000

Rescuers in Turkey and Syria are still looking for survivors of the earthquake that struck on Monday, but they are being hindered by the cold weather, frequent aftershocks, and the risks posed by severely damaged buildings. The death toll has risen to 5,000.

The latest death toll reported by Turkey is 3,419, bringing the total number of confirmed fatalities in the area between Turkey and Syria to 5,021.

With officials from the World Health Organization predicting that as many as 20,000 may have passed already, there are worries that this number will increase. 20,000 more people sustain injuries.

Some of the worst devastation occurred near the quake’s epicentre between the Turkish cities of Kahramanmaras and Gaziantep,home to two million where entire blocks now lie in ruins under gathering snow.

The Syrian health ministry has reported damage across the provinces of Aleppo, Latakia, Hama and Tartus.

A winter blizzard has covered major roads into the area in ice and snow and officials said three major airports have been rendered inoperable, complicating aid deliveries.

Up to 23 million people could be affected by the disaster, the World Health Organization has warned.

“Event overview maps show that potentially 23 million people are exposed, including around five million vulnerable populations,” WHO senior emergencies officer Adelheid Marschang told the UN health agency’s executive committee.

The impact on infrastructure, particularly health services, will be considerable, particularly in an area already vulnerable after a decade of war, the Islamic State insurgency and a recent cholera epidemic.


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