Victims of the earthquake that hit the southeast of Turkey and Syria were buried this Wednesday in the main cemetery of the Turkish city of Gaziantep, in a joint funeral in which the coffins were grouped ten by ten, among heartbroken relatives.
Since the earthquake shook both countries on Monday, the fatalities have been arriving at the Yesilkent cemetery and the authorities are studying the possibility of extending the hours of that necropolis. Along these lines, the mayor of the city, Fatma Sahin, called for Muslim religious to come to Gaziantep to help celebrate the funerals.
Hundreds of men lined up this Wednesday in front of the coffins in the Yeslikent cemetery, while the imam, aided by a microphone, pronounced his prayer and blessed each of the victims. The women gathered in another area of the cemetery, according to a report by the France Press news agency.
Among the victims were Done and Ayas Sundar, a couple, and Ayse Colak, 35, who died along with her husband and parents in the collapse of their building in Nurdagi, her sisters said.
“Nurdagi no longer exists, the city is completely destroyed,” said one of the sisters.
Ruveyda, a 17-year-old teenager who lived in an apartment located on the sixth floor of a building, was also buried. Her mother said that they both managed to escape before the building collapsed. But although at first the young woman said that she was fine, after a few hours she began to feel bad and she died in a hospital, apparently due to internal injuries, her mother said. Another of her children, Serhat, is still missing under the rubble.
In the region, international rescuers and Turkish rescue teams and volunteers continue to search for survivors.