On Monday, a magnitude 7.8 earthquake shook central Turkey and northwest Syria, causing more than 1,600 fatalities and thousands of injuries. The quake was felt in Cyprus and Lebanon, and Erdem, a resident of Gaziantep who has lived there for 40 years, said it was unlike anything he had ever experienced. He described it as feeling like “a baby in a crib” being shaken vigorously. 16 structures collapsed in Sanliurfa and 34 in Osmaniye, and Turkish Prime Minister Shehbaz paid his condolences.
As officials dispatched rescue teams and supply aircraft to the devastated area and declared a “level 4 alarm” that requests international assistance, Turkey’s disaster agency reported 76 fatalities and 440 injuries.
The majority of the fatalities and injuries, according to Syrian official media, occurred in the provinces of Hama, Aleppo, and Latakia, where large structures had been torn down.
Salqin, a hamlet around 5 kilometres (3 miles) from the Turkish border, has seen tens of buildings fall, according to a member of the White Helmets rescue organisation in a video footage posted on Twitter.
Homes were “completely demolished,” according to the rescuer in the video, which showed a street covered in debris.
Fighting during Syria’s nearly 12-year civil conflict has already caused damage to several buildings in the area.
Witnesses reported that residents of Damascus and the Lebanese cities of Beirut and Tripoli fled their buildings in case they fell and got into their automobiles.
Erdem claimed that in Turkey’s Gaziantep, residents had abandoned their shaking homes because they were too terrified to stay.
Erdem stated over the phone that “everyone is sitting in their automobiles or attempting to drive to open spaces away from buildings.” “I imagine that nobody in Gaziantep is at home right now.”
According to White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan on Twitter, the United States was “profoundly worried” about the earthquakes that occurred in Turkey and Syria and was actively watching the situation.
I have spoken with Turkish officials to let them know that we are prepared to offer any support that may be required, he said.
Because to its proximity to seismic fault lines, the area is prone to earthquakes.
PM and President offer their sympathies
Both Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and President Arif Alvi expressed their sorrow and sympathy to the governments and citizens of the earthquake-affected areas.