The death toll from the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria rises to more than 12,000

The death toll from the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria rises to more than 12,000

Ankara/Beirut, Feb 8 (EFE).- The number of deaths from Monday’s powerful earthquakes exceeds 12,000 today, of which 9,057 occurred in Turkey and 2,992 in Syria as rescue efforts continue to find survivors in the rubble.

Likewise, in the two countries hit by the disaster, there are also more than 58,000 injured, many with fractures and serious cuts.

In Turkey, a total of 6,444 buildings in ten southeastern provinces they have collapsed due to strong earthquakes, according to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who this morning acknowledged that the authorities initially had some problems in the rescue efforts.

“The first day there were some problems, but the second and today things are under control. We will start removing the rubble and our goal is to rebuild the houses in Kahramanmaras and the other affected towns within a year,” he promised.

In addition, Erdogan announced financial aid for the victims in the amount of 10,000 Turkish liras (495 euros/530 dollars) per person affected.

For its part, in Syria, immersed in a civil war for more than a decade, the information on victims and those affected comes, on the one hand, from the government of Bashar al-Assad and, on the other, from the last enclave of the country controlled by the opposition, surrounded by Russian-backed government forces.

So far, 1,262 people have lost their lives and another 2,285 have been injured by the quakes in areas controlled by Damascus, while another 1,730 have deceased and 2,850 have suffered injuries in opposition areas.

“The number is expected to increase considerably due to the presence of hundreds of families under the rubble of the destroyed houses. Our teams continue with the rescue operations amid the difficult circumstances,” said the White Helmets rescue group, which operates in opposition areas.

In the areas controlled by Damascus, almost 300,000 people have been forced to leave their homes as a result of the earthquakes, while the Government of Al Asad has opened a total of 180 shelters to accommodate those affected and has deployed 157 mobile units to the most affected provinces. EFE

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