- 15 Feb 2023 - 20:15(20:15 GMT)
Help ‘very slow’ in reaching northwest Syria: Aid group
The former president of the Syrian American Society says aid to the war- and earthquake-stricken northwest region of Syria has been “very slow” to reach.
“Five days after the earthquake we had seen nothing going into Syria. It’s still very slow … and the needs are tremendous,” Mufaddal Hamadeh told Al Jazeera from Idlib province.
The US-based oncologist said the aid coming in was largely related to nutritional and housing needs and he was not aware of any medical aid reaching the area.
“The medical resources here are drained. And what we really need is stuff like dialysis equipment … chemotherapy but most importantly, we need expertise in handling some of these very complex cases,” he added.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 19:33(19:33 GMT)
Blinken to visit quake-hit Turkey on Sunday
United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken will travel Sunday to Turkey to view the post-earthquake relief operations, the State Department has announced.
Blinken will visit the Incirlik Air Base, through which aid is flowing, and then hold talks with senior Turkish officials in the capital Ankara.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 18:59(18:59 GMT)
More than 1,000 cross through al-Hawa crossing into Syria
Spokesperson for Syria’s Al Bab al-Hawa crossing has said 1,250 Syrians have come through the route under the new temporary visa offered to Syrians who have residence permits in the 10 quake-hit Turkish provinces.
Before the quake struck, almost all of the humanitarian aid for the more than four million people living in rebel-controlled areas was delivered from Turkey through the Bab al-Hawa crossing.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 18:22(18:22 GMT)
UK to makes it easier for aid agencies in Syria to avoid breaching sanctions
The United Kingdom has said it was issuing two new licences to make it easier for aid agencies helping earthquake relief efforts to operate in Syria without breaching sanctions aimed at the government of President al-Assad.
The British government said the temporary new licences would “strengthen the timely and effective delivery of relief efforts by removing the need for individual licence applications”.
“UK sanctions do not target humanitarian aid, food, or medical supplies, but we recognise that the current requirements for individual licencing are not always practical during a crisis response,” Minister of State for International Development Andrew Mitchell said in a statement.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 17:30(17:30 GMT)
WHO says northwest Syria of ‘greatest concern’
The World Health Organization has revealed that it is particularly concerned over the welfare of people in northwestern Syria, a rebel-held region with little access to aid.
“It’s clear that the zone of greatest concern at the moment is the area of northwestern Syria,” WHO Health Emergencies Programme Director Michael Ryan told a press briefing in Geneva, Switzerland.
“The impact of the earthquake in areas of Syria controlled by the government is significant, but the services are there and there is access to those people,” Ryan said. “We have to remember here that in Syria, we’ve had 10 years of war. The health system is amazingly fragile. People have been through hell.”
- 15 Feb 2023 - 17:10(17:10 GMT)
Antakya ‘absolutely devastated’: AJ correspondent
Al Jazeera’s Natasha Ghoneim, reporting from Iskenderun in Turkey, says the capital of Hatay province – Antakya – has been “absolutely devastated”.
“We spoke to the mayor, and the scope of this devastation is starting to come into focus in terms of statistics. He says more than 14,000 people have died. More than 3,000 buildings need to be demolished,” she said.
“Just as with the federal government, no tally of the missing has been compiled. He says it’s simply too early. He expects that the search and rescue operations will continue for a month.”
- 15 Feb 2023 - 16:31(16:31 GMT)
WHO says it asked President Assad to open Syria border crossings
Senior World Health Organization officials asked Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to open more border crossing with Turkey to get aid to areas of northern Syria hit by powerful earthquakes, the head of WHO has said.
“We requested that he [al-Assad] allow additional cross-border access points, which he indicated he was open to,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a briefing in Geneva.
“On Monday, two more cross border points were opened, allowing convoys from Turkey into the northwest of the Syrian Arab Republic.”
- 15 Feb 2023 - 16:10(16:10 GMT)
Turkey earthquake: How are people reacting to state response?
Osmaniye and Kahmaranmaras, Turkey – When Halil Ibrahim Caliskan looks at his ruined supermarket on the ground floor of an earthquake-shattered building, he does not blame his bad luck.
“We knew that we lived in an earthquake zone. It’s not fate. People are to blame for making weak buildings,” the 50-year-old shop owner told Al Jazeera in the southern Turkish city of Osmaniye.
Read more here.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 15:43(15:43 GMT)
Close Up: Buried Alive in Turkey’s Earthquake
Al Jazeera’s Tierney Bonini followed one rescue worker and his perilous attempt to save one family trapped under the rubble.
Watch our Close Up documentary from the epicentre of Turkey’s catastrophic earthquake.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 15:28(15:28 GMT)
UAE pledges additional $50m in quake aid to Syria
The United Arab Emirates has pledged an additional $50m in assistance to quake-hit Syria, the official WAM news agency reported, bringing the total value of pledges to more than $100m.
Emirati President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan “has ordered the provision of an additional US$50 million as relief aid for quake-affected people in Syria”, WAM reported.
Of the total sum, $20m would be allocated to “humanitarian projects in response to the emergency appeal of the United Nations (UN)”, according to the news report.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 15:07(15:07 GMT)
‘Herculean task’ to distribute aid: Al Jazeera correspondent
Al Jazeera’s Sami Zeidan has taken a flight over some of the communities that require aid in rural areas of Turkey. He said the aerial perspective made it clear how “big the challenge is to try and get aid to people”, especially in remote communities.
“When you’re actually on a helicopter … you go over these areas and you’ll see a little cluster, a village which is just a little cluster of houses nestled on top of a mountain, and you fly for several more minutes and you come to another similar scene. How do you go from community to community in terrain like that?” he said, reporting from an airbase in Adana, Turkey.
“It is a herculean task that lies ahead of authorities to try and reach all people. I think this is something that the world is going to struggle to deal with for a while.”
- 15 Feb 2023 - 14:45(14:45 GMT)
Al-Assad welcomes ‘positive stance’ from Arab countries towards Syria
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has welcomed “any positive stance” from Arab nations, including many that severed ties with Damascus since the outbreak of its war.
The 57-year-old’s remarks came during a meeting with Jordanian foreign minister Safadi in Damascus, the second visit by a top Arab diplomat to Syria since the earthquakes.
“The Syrian people welcome and respond to any positive stance towards them, especially from the Arab brothers,” al-Assad said, according to a statement from his office.
He further emphasised the importance of “bilateral cooperation between Syria and Jordan”.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 14:25(14:25 GMT)
‘Lots of friends gone’: Al Jazeera correspondent
Al Jazeera’s Resul Serdar, reporting from his hometown Adiyaman, says the earthquakes were the “biggest disaster of its known history”, a place where “lots of friends were now gone”.
“Many of them were very close to me. We had amazing shared stories here. We have laughed here, we have joked here, started preparing for university here together,” he added.
“And now I won’t be able to call them, and have a chat over the phone with them … it’s quite a painful idea. It’s difficult to get used to not being able to hear them or meet up with them again.”
- 15 Feb 2023 - 13:50(13:50 GMT)
Saudi Arabia plans to establish temporary houses for quake victims
Saudi Arabia plans to establish several thousand temporary houses for quake victims in Turkey and Syria, the head of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center has said.
Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Rabeeah told Al Ekhbariya television that his country was “studying the construction of 3,000 temporary houses in quake-hit areas in Turkey and Syria”.
“We will continue to help those affected by the earthquake disaster … for weeks and perhaps months due to the great scale of the tragedy,” Al Rabeeah added.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 13:33(13:33 GMT)
Jordan’s foreign minister makes first Syria visit since start of war
Jordan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Ayman Safadi has arrived in Damascus, the first such visit between the two neighbours since the Syrian war began in 2011.
“Safadi will discuss the humanitarian and aid needs that the two countries need,” a statement from the foreign ministry said. Jordan hosts tens of thousands of Syrian refugees who were displaced in the war.
Jordan has sent large shipments of aid to Turkey and Syria – with the kingdom sending a medical hospital to Turkey and organising several large flights and aid convoys through the country’s northern border crossing with Syria.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 12:55(12:55 GMT)
Anger grows in northwest Syria about lack of aid
There is growing anger and desperation in rebel-held areas of Syria after earthquakes devastated the region and aid has been slow to arrive.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 12:43(12:43 GMT)
Turkey reports 50,576 buildings collapsed, damaged
Turkey has said a total of 50,576 buildings have either collapsed or are heavily damaged following the earthquakes that first struck last week.
In a report, the country’s Ministry of Environment said all at-risk buildings need to be demolished urgently. Authorities have so far inspected more than 387,000 buildings across the 10 quake-hit southeastern provinces.
The city of Gaziantep has the highest number of buildings that need to be urgently demolished – nearly 12,000, followed by 10,911 in Hatay and 10,777 in Kahramanmaras, the report said.
The quakes were followed by 3,858 aftershocks, according to the Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD).
- 15 Feb 2023 - 12:33(12:33 GMT)
Syria’s dead get back home — one last time
Cilvegözü, Turkey – The most common sight going through southern Turkey’s Cilvegözü crossing to Bab al-Hawa through to Syria’s Idlib is sadly the same pick-up truck transporting the bodies of Syrians killed in the earthquakes in Turkey so they can be buried back home.
Since two huge earthquakes and hundreds of aftershocks destroyed much of 10 provinces in southeastern Turkey, 1,413 Syrians have returned to their home country in body bags as of Wednesday morning.
Most, if not all, of those passing through Bab al-Hawa had been living in Hatay province, which has arguably seen the worst devastation in Turkey.
A municipality truck waits, it spends the day crossing the border to unload the bodies, then loops back to Turkey to pick up more.
Every five minutes, it seems, a new vehicle arrives at the departure point where the municipality truck waits. They can carry up to 10 bodies – some bags seem to have more than one person inside and there was one that Al Jazeera saw of a child who was only eight months old.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 12:15(12:15 GMT)
‘When I heard voices, I started to whistle’: Turkey earthquake survivor
Osmaniye, Turkey – Marut Babaoğlu, 26, car mechanic, recounted being trapped in his collapsed building in Turkey for four days.
“I was awake when the earthquake happened, I ran down the stairs of the building – I was on the fifth floor, there are eight floors in total. I reached between the second and third floors, then the building collapsed and I was stuck under rubble in the stairwell. I was in a space big enough so that I could turn and move a little, but my hand was stuck. It was pitch dark.”
“After more than three days, I had to drink my own urine. I got so thirsty that I peed into a shoe and drank out of that. After a while, my body stopped accepting the urine, it made me vomit,” he said.
“When I heard voices, I started to whistle. It took 12 hours [from him hearing them] for them to respond to me,” he said. “From the top of the collapsed building, they made a tunnel to reach me and pull me out.”
- 15 Feb 2023 - 12:00(12:00 GMT)
74-year-old woman pulled from rubble after 227 hours
A 74-year-old woman has been pulled alive from the rubble by rescue teams in Kahramanmaras, 227 hours after the first earthquake hit on February 6. Kahramanmaras is near the epicentre of the first quake.
Turkish media identified the woman as Cemile Kekec. The rescue came as chances of finding survivors have greatly diminished. A 42-year-old woman was rescued in the same city five hours earlier.
— A Haber (@ahaber) February 15, 2023
- 15 Feb 2023 - 11:49(11:49 GMT)
‘Our one-storey building collapsed on us’: Survivor in Turkey
Gülhan Vişne, 17, a high school student, recounted being pulled from the rubble as she sat in a state hospital in Osmaniye, Turkey.
“I thought I was going to die, that it was impossible to get out. There was very little space, it was full of dust and really hard to breathe, I’m still coughing because the dust scratched my lungs,” she told Al Jazeera.
“They [the rescuers] couldn’t lift the rubble off me, so they dug a really small tunnel but my foot was stuck,” she said.
“I was trying to motivate myself – telling myself, ‘you’ve almost made it’ – but I passed out three or four times in those hours. But I had no time to panic, I was just trying to describe the situation and help the rescuers – ‘remove that stone, move that wardrobe, take out that door’.”
“I was trying to give orders. It was so serious, I couldn’t panic. I was the only one who could describe how I was stuck,” she said.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 11:32(11:32 GMT)
Dutch dogs rescue four people from rubble: Rescue team
A Dutch rescue dog team has said it rescued four people alive from the rubble in the Turkish city of Antakya in the Hatay region.
Those rescued included three men and a child, the Dutch rescue dog team RHWW announced on Twitter on Wednesday.
All four survivors had been lying under the rubble since the massive earthquakes first hit on February 6.
A father and his son were found during the night, the team said. Two other men had been rescued on Tuesday evening after sniffer dogs detected them.
#BREAK Vader en zoon levend gevonden!
Dit is het resultaat van het werk van onze SRO hond(en) en collega’s van één van de avondgroepen. Het bericht is bevestigd door de SAR.
— Reddingshonden RHWW (@reddingshonden) February 15, 2023
- 15 Feb 2023 - 11:21(11:21 GMT)
Northwest Syria humanitarian situation ‘horrible’: Activist
The humanitarian outlook in northwest Syria remains “horrible”, activist Abdulkafi Alhamdo told Al Jazeera.
Alhamdo, speaking from the opposition-held city of Idlib, decried the slow response from the United Nations in beginning to deliver aid to the region. The UN has admitted shortcomings in its slow delivery of aid. On Tuesday, the UN began delivering aid via two newly approved crossings, bringing the total number of approved crossings to three.
“People here … need urgent help. They needed urgent help from the first day of the earthquake, nevertheless, the United Nations was very slow in responding to these people,” Alhamdo, said.
He added there are widespread medical shortages and access to clean water is limited, leaving people “no other choice but to drink and use this water that’s not appropriate”, he said.
“This area is suffering from two earthquakes, the one we suffered from the earth … that’s coming from nature. But the stronger earthquake that hit this area is from United Nations, who was very late,” he said.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 11:17(11:17 GMT)
Malaysian prime minister visits Turkey
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday received Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim in the capital, Ankara, for talks, state-run Anadolu news agency reported,
Erdogan and Ibrahim held a closed-door meeting at the presidential complex, according to the Turkish presidency. The meeting came after two strong earthquakes jolted southern Turkey and Syria on February 6, killing more than 41,000 people.
Condolences have poured in from around the world, with many countries sending rescue teams and aid.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 11:01(11:01 GMT)
Turkey arrests 78 for ‘provocative’ social posts, phishing
Turkish police have arrested 78 people accused of creating fear and panic by “sharing provocative posts” about last week’s earthquake on social media.
The death toll in Turkey and Syria from the devastating earthquake has climbed above 41,000, and millions are in need of humanitarian aid.
Turkey’s General Directorate of Security said it had identified 613 people accused of making provocative posts, and legal proceedings had been initiated against 293. Of this group, the chief prosecutor had ordered the arrest of 78.
The directorate added that 46 websites were shut down for running “phishing scams” trying to steal donations for quake victims, and 15 social media accounts posing as official institutions were closed.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 10:48(10:48 GMT)
Eight-month-old baby recovering after falling five storeys
Doctors were continuing to treat an eight-month-old baby who fell five storeys from an apartment building during last week’s major quakes in southern Turkey, according to Anadolu news agency.
Birce Fansa fell from the fifth floor of the building with her cradle during the quakes in Hatay’s Antakya district.
Her mother and father, Nilay and Cengiz, were rescued from the building’s rubble 13 and 33 hours after the quake, respectively. Her older siblings Alin and Nil did not survive.
Dr Nursah Keskin, who is treating the baby at the hospital, told reporters that Birce is very lucky.
“We started treatments to reverse intracranial haemorrhage. Her leg is broken … Much worse things could have happened with the impact of hitting the ground. God protected her, it’s a miracle,” she said.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 10:30(10:30 GMT)
Remote Turkish villages underscore scope of damage: AJ correspondent
Al Jazeera’s Stefanie Dekker has travelled to Cakmak, a remote village in Turkey affected by the earthquakes, where she said the damage underscored just how hard the widespread rebuilding effort will be.
“The extent of the devastation, if you look at the towns, the cities, and now a remote village where nothing stands any more, will give you a sense of just how many people have been affected and how difficult it’s going to be to reconstruct all of this,” Dekker said.
At least 95 of the 100 houses in the village were destroyed in the earthquake, Dekker said, although there were no fatalities among those in the village at the time of the disaster, she said.
Residents are now living in tents near their homes as they begin to clear the rubble and rebuild.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 10:15(10:15 GMT)
NBA coach Popovich supporting school for Turkish orphans
San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said he is supporting a school for orphans in Turkey after the devastating February 6 earthquakes.
In a video on Twitter, Popovich extended his sympathies and condolences to the people affected by the disaster in which at least 35,000 people have died in Turkey and more than 5,800 in Syria. He said would be financially supporting the Istanbul-based Darussafaka Schools, which have provided learning and lodging to orphans since 1863, and survive on donations.
“The one thing that I would ask. If there is anybody capable to help monetarily, to find a way to do that,” the 74-year-old said, adding that he had lived for a year in Diyarbakir for a year, and travelled to places like Gaziantep while he was young.
Popovich has been coaching the Spurs since 1996 and has won the NBA title five times in 1999, 2003, 2005, 2007 and 2014. He also coached the US national men’s team to a gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Gregg Popovich has announced his support for Turkey in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake that recently struck the country.
He has pledged to donate to Darüşşafaka, an institution that has been providing education opportunities to orphaned children for over a century. pic.twitter.com/dyAs3jBhME
— Socrates (@SocratesDergi) February 14, 2023
- 15 Feb 2023 - 10:15(10:15 GMT)
Aid convoy reaches northwest Syria after crossing front line: Report
An aid convoy has reached earthquake-hit northwestern Syria from the eastern Deir Az Zor province, according to Reuters news agency, in an example of assistance making it across a front line in the country’s continuing civil war.
The aid convoy arrived overnight in the area controlled by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), according to a Reuters witness.
It had been organised by Syrian Arab tribes, according to the news agency. Many of the Syrians displaced from Deir Az Zor to the rebel-held northwest during Syria’s civil war are members of Arab tribes that wield significant influence.
More aid was being collected, said Hamoud Saleh al-Darjah, an organiser. The aid would be distributed in the north without discrimination, he told Reuters.
“This isn’t the last campaign,” he said.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 09:59(09:59 GMT)
Turkey’s top diplomat praises Armenia’s ‘hand of friendship’
Amid a Turkish-Armenian rapprochement, Turkey’s foreign minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu has praised Armenia’s earthquake response aid.
“Armenia extended us the hand of friendship at this difficult time,” Cavusoglu told a joint press conference after meeting with his Armenian counterpart Ararat Mirzoyan in Ankara.
Both ministers said their governments are willing to fully restore ties, including the opening of the border, but did not give an
Turkey opened a border crossing with Armenia last week for the first time in 35 years to enable earthquake aid transports.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 09:46(09:46 GMT)
NASA ‘spinoff’ tech helps rescuers find survivors
The US space agency, NASA, has said its technology was deployed to help responders locate people trapped in rubble following the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.
The space agency said that rescue groups in Turkey were sent NASA spinoff technology that can detect people trapped under rubble from Florida’s SpecOps Group.
Prototypes of the units, dubbed Finding Individuals for Disaster Emergency Response (FINDER), were originally built by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in collaboration with the US Department of Homeland Security before licensing them to SpecOps.
“In times of disaster, technology can be a lifeline. FINDER, a @NASA spinoff technology, is providing rescue teams with a crucial tool to locate and aid those in need after the recent earthquake in Turkey and Syria,” NASA administrator Bill Nelson said in a tweet.
In times of disaster, technology can be a lifeline. FINDER, a @NASA spinoff technology, is providing rescue teams with a crucial tool to locate and aid those in need after the recent earthquake in Turkey and Syria. Learn more here: https://t.co/wYc7U5PGlV
— Bill Nelson (@SenBillNelson) February 14, 2023
- 15 Feb 2023 - 09:32(09:32 GMT)
Photos: Syrians cross from Turkey after earthquake
Mazen Alloush, director of media relations at Bab al-Hawa crossing, told Al Jazeera that Syrians living in the 10 earthquake-affected provinces in Turkey were allowed to return to Syria if they held a temporary protection card.
They were required to stay in Syria for three months, but could not stay beyond six months, he said.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 09:17(09:17 GMT)
Top diplomats from Turkey-Armenia meet amid earthquake recovery
Armenia’s foreign minister Ararat Mirzoyan has arrived in Turkey amid a rapprochement between the two countries that has continued in the wake of the earthquakes.
Mirzoyan’s visit, in which he is set to meet with Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu, comes days after Anadolu news agency reported that a border gate between Turkey and Armenia had been opened for the first time in 35 years to allow aid for victims.
Ankara has not had diplomatic or commercial ties with Armenia for decades, with the two countries long at odds over the 1.5 million people Armenia says were killed in 1915 by the Ottoman Empire, the predecessor to modern Turkey. Armenia has said the killings constituted genocide. Turkey has rejected that characterisation.
Last year, Turkish and Armenian leaders met informally at a European summit, which followed a foreign ministers’ meeting. Mirzoyan also intends to visit Armenian rescue teams working in Turkey during the trip, according to Armenia’s foreign ministry.
The Armenian FM has arrived in Ankara, Turkey.
FM Mirzoyan will meet Turkish FM Mevlut Cavusoglu during the visit.
FM Mirzoyan’s delegation includes VS of Parliament and the Special Representative of Armenia in the negotiations for normalization with Turkey Ruben Rubinyan. pic.twitter.com/OiMm9sY45z
— 301🇦🇲 (@301arm) February 15, 2023
- 15 Feb 2023 - 09:15(09:15 GMT)
Syrians return from quake-affected Turkey to quake-hit homes
Syrians living in quake-affected parts of Turkey are visiting their quake-hit homes in northwest Syria. They have been crossing the border at the Bab al-Hawa crossing to check on their families and homes.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 09:13(09:13 GMT)
Rescue operations continue in Turkey
Search and rescue operations continue in southern Turkey, even as the hope of finding survivors faded nine days after the initial earthquake.
The Turkish government has said 74 teams from abroad have been helping in rescue efforts in the country.
Despite the closing window for finding people alive, a 42-year-old woman was pulled from the rubble in Kahramanmaras after 222 hours.
As per experts, the first 72 hours are considered to be critical, and the survival ratio gradually reduces to 6 percent by the fifth day.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 09:01(09:01 GMT)
‘Our home is yours’: Turkey families take in survivors
When Melih Telci, a 28-year-old lawyer from Istanbul, heard about a family of four left homeless in the province of Hatay after last week’s devastating earthquakes, he knew what he had to do. He picked up his phone.
“I called them and said; ‘Come, our home is yours,’” he said.
Telci met the family after they travelled to Istanbul, and then drove them to one of his family’s summer homes in Yalova, an eastern coastal city along the Sea of Marmara. “We set them up with everything – furniture, clothes and food. Now, I’m working on finding the father a job,” Telci told Al Jazeera.
Telci’s family has two more summer homes in Yalova where they hope to welcome more families over the next few days.
They are among Turkish families across the county who are connecting with quake-stricken survivors through word of mouth, social media and the help of local authorities, and then giving shelter to the earthquake victims.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 08:49(08:49 GMT)
Jordan’s foreign minister arrives in Damascus: Report
Jordan’s foreign minister has arrived in Damascus on the first high-level visit since 2012 after the Syrian civil war started in 2011, an official source told Reuters news agency.
Ayman Safadi will later head to Turkey to show “solidarity” after the quake, the source said. Jordan’s foreign ministry had earlier confirmed the planned visits.
Jordan has been a major provider of aid to both countries since the earthquakes.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 08:40(08:40 GMT)
How strong were the February 6 earthquakes?
The magnitude 7.8 earthquake first hit Turkey, at 4:17am (01:17 GMT), on February 6. It was centred in the Pazarcik district of Turkey’s Kahramanmaras province.
Less than 12 hours later, a magnitude 7.6 earthquake struck the same region.
The earthquakes were felt by millions of people across the region up to 1,000km (621 miles) away.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 08:31(08:31 GMT)
Massive tent-making operation under way in Turkey: AJ correspondent
Reporting from the Turkish capital, Ankara, Al Jazeera’s Sinem Koseoglu says a massive tent-making operation is taking place across the country to accommodate those made homeless by the earthquakes.
“Here I am at the Turkish Red Crescent tent production facility. As you can see, there are workers here who are working very hard to be able to produce tents and dispatch these tents to the earthquake-hit area through the Turkish disaster management agency,” she said.
“Here at this facility, there are three shifts. Around the clock, 550 workers are producing, sowing these tents here in the capital,” she said, adding the organisation has a second tent production location in eastern Turkey.
“On a daily basis, they are producing 500 tents, and every day the number of tents they are producing is increasing. Currently, the Turkish disaster management agency, AFAD, is ordering tents from everywhere … they are also giving orders from abroad and from any tent production company across [Turkey],” she said.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 08:16(08:16 GMT)
Woman, 42, rescued in Turkey after 222 hours
A 42-year-old woman has been rescued from the rubble of a building in the southern Turkish city of Kahramanmaras, where she was trapped for almost 222 hours.
TV footage showed rescue workers carrying the woman, identified as Melike Imamoglu, strapped on a stretcher to a nearby ambulance.
The astounding rescue comes as survivor discoveries have slowed on the ninth day of rescue operations. Kahramanmaras is close to the epicentre of last week’s earthquakes.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 08:16(08:16 GMT)
Metallica’s foundation donates $250,000 for quake relief
American metal band Metallica’s foundation has donated $250,000 for relief efforts in Turkey and Syria.
“We’re at a loss for words to describe the devastation in southern Turkey and northern Syria,” the foundation, known as All Within My Hands, named after one of the band’s songs, said on Twitter.
It said it would contribute grants of $125,000 each to Direct Relief and World Central Kitchen, two non-profits “to assist in funding much-needed medical aid and meals”, the foundation said in a statement on Tuesday.
Two of our partner organizations, @DirectRelief & @WCKitchen, have boots on the ground providing medical aid & food to the victims of this disaster. #AWMH is providing $125k grants to each organization to support their relief efforts.
Learn more at https://t.co/uaQymJ4BXN (2/3)
— All Within My Hands Foundation (@AWMHFoundation) February 14, 2023
- 15 Feb 2023 - 08:00(08:00 GMT)
Colombia sends 6 tonnes of humanitarian aid to Turkey
Colombia has sent 6 tonnes of humanitarian aid to Turkey, the Turkish ambassador in Bogota said.
Beste Pehlivan Sun told Anadolu Agency that aid materials consisted of blankets, winter clothes, and hygiene materials.
“Our Colombian friends, our citizens living here, and our business people have taken action to heal the wounds. As a result of a very intense aid campaign at our embassy and Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency, we are sending the aid to our country with the contribution of Turkish Airlines,” Sun said.
On Tuesday, Colombia also sent a team of 20 experts to Turkey to support the disaster victims, according to authorities.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 07:50(07:50 GMT)
Pakistan sends winterised tents to Turkey
Pakistan has sent 6.7 tonnes of relief goods, primarily winterised tents, for Turkey earthquake victims, according to the country’s National Disaster Management Authority.
The shipment was dispatched through a Pakistan International Airlines flight, said a statement from the NDMA.
Islamabad has already dispatched more than 150 tonnes of relief goods, including tents, clothes, and food items, aside from army and trained civilian volunteers and rescue teams to Turkey’s quake-stricken regions, according to Anadolu news agency.
Several Pakistani charities, including Al-Khidmat Foundation, Baitussalam Welfare Trust, and Edhi Foundation, have also been engaged in the relief and rescue operations in different earthquake-hit areas.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 07:46(07:46 GMT)
Turkish stock exchange reopens
Turkey’s stock exchange, which has been closed for the past week following the earthquakes, has reopened.
Borsa Istanbul’s BIST 100 index opened with a 5.8 percent gain over February 7, when it had seen a sharp fall in the aftermath of the disasters. By the time the exchange was temporarily shut on February 8, the index had fallen 16 percent compared with pre-quake levels.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 07:40(07:40 GMT)
US shoots down Iranian-made drone over Syria, in reminder of war
US forces have shot down an Iranian-made drone flying over a base housing American troops in northeastern Syria, the US military has said, serving as a reminder of the ongoing war even as the country grapples with the aftermath of last week’s deadly earthquakes.
US Central Command said in a statement that the reconnaissance drone flew over Mission Support Site Conoco on Tuesday afternoon before American forces shot it down.
No group claimed responsibility for flying the drone in northeastern Syria, where it is not uncommon for bases housing US troops to come under rocket fire or mortar attacks. Iran-backed militias are based nearby, as are sleeper cells of ISIL (ISIS) which was defeated in Syria in March 2019.
There are roughly 900 US soldiers in Syria, including in the north and farther south and east, who work alongside Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces targeting ISIL and its sleeper cells.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 07:33(07:33 GMT)
Jordan’s foreign minister to visit Syria, Turkey
Jordan’s Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi will head to Syria and Turkey on Wednesday in a “show of solidarity” after the quake that killed thousands of people in both countries, his ministry has said.
Jordan, which neighbours Syria, has sent large shipments of aid to both countries with the kingdom sending a field hospital to Turkey and organising several large aid convoys through the country’s northern border crossing with Syria.
However, Safadi’s visit to Damascus would be the first such trip by a top Jordanian official to Syria since the more than decade-long conflict devastated Syria and saw both sides take opposing camps.
Staunch US ally Jordan had supported mainstream rebel groups that had sought to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad but later backed the Russian-led military campaign that regained southern Syria from rebel control.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 07:26(07:26 GMT)
Biggest challenge in Turkey is ‘accommodation’
Reporting from a Turkish Red Crescent tent manufacturing facility in Ankara, Al Jazeera’s Sinem Koseoglu said the biggest challenge facing emergency responders is the need for housing.
“There are vital needs in the affected areas, as many people have been left homeless – they have been transferred to hotels, dormitories, public guest houses,” she said. “The biggest problem right now because of the weather conditions is accommodations.”
Turkey’s emergency response agency said on Tuesday that nearly 200,000 people have been evacuated from the affected areas, although many people had stayed near their homes in makeshift shelters.
Erdogan has said 10,000 housing containers used during the World Cup in Qatar will arrive in Turkey on Wednesday.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 06:51(06:51 GMT)
212 hours under the rubble: 77-year-old survivor rescued in Turkey
A 77-year-old woman was pulled from the rubble in the city of Adiyaman – surviving an astounding 212 hours of being trapped, according to Anadolu news agency.
Turkish media reported that Fatma Gungor was pulled alive from the rubble of a seven-storey apartment block in the city of Adiyaman during the overnight rescue Monday into Tuesday.
Wearing an oxygen mask, covered in a gold foil blanket and strapped onto a stretcher, Gungor was carried by rescue workers down from the ruins of the building to a waiting ambulance, footage of the rescue showed.
Afterwards, Gungor’s relatives hugged the rescue team, made up of military personnel and members of the disaster management authority AFAD.
Nine others were rescued from the rubble on Tuesday, eight days since the initial earthquakes hit.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 06:40(06:40 GMT)
The dogs helping find Turkey’s earthquake survivors
Trained rescue dogs have helped to find survivors buried underneath layers of concrete and otherwise undetectable during days of rescue operations in Turkey.
Among those rescue groups was REDOG, a K9 volunteer team from Switzerland, who were on the ground in the Turkish city of Iskenderun, working with the local GEA team, an all-volunteer search and rescue group.
“I think it’s one of the most emotional moments of my life … the moment when one of our dogs signals to us that he found some people in the rubble,” REDOG’s vice chief for rubble search Matthias Gerber told Al Jazeera.
Rescue dogs have come from a wide range of countries including El Salvador, Germany, Mexico, Qatar, South Korea, Switzerland, Ukraine and the United States.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 05:57(05:57 GMT)
Volunteer groups rush to distribute aid to Turkey quake victims
Diyarbakir, Turkey – Volunteers at a three-storey office block in Diyarbakir sit amid a fog of cigarette smoke, sipping cups of black tea as they plan the logistics of delivering aid to victims of Turkey’s earthquake disaster.
Dozens of helpers, working from offices borrowed from the city’s Chamber of Commerce, are coordinating cargoes of supplies for millions of people affected by the catastrophe last week.
They are just a small cog in a machine of many aid operations set up by citizens across Turkey.
“Our motivation comes from wanting to support our people, and that’s what we’re working for,” said Evin Seker, a 30-year-old sociologist who normally works for a law firm in Diyarbakir, a southeastern city of two million in a province that bears the same name, and the largest Kurdish-majority city in Turkey.
“I previously worked as a volunteer for an NGO helping children, and when the earthquake happened, we all came together to help the people who have lost everything.”
- 15 Feb 2023 - 05:30(05:30 GMT)
NATO to send 1,000 containers to Turkey
NATO has said it will send more than 1,000 shipping containers to Turkey to help provide shelter for earthquake survivors.
“This semi-permanent shelter is capable of housing at least 2,000 people displaced by the earthquakes in Turkiye,” said a tweet from NATO’s Joint Force Command in Naples.
The containers, which are currently in Italy’s Taranto, will be sent to Turkey next week, the alliance said.
— NATO JFC Naples (@JFC_Naples) February 14, 2023
- 15 Feb 2023 - 05:27(05:27 GMT)
Nine survivors pulled from rubble in Turkey on Tuesday
A total of nine people were rescued from the rubble in Turkey on Tuesday, including two brothers aged 17 and 21, who were pulled from the ruins of an apartment block in Kahramanmaras province.
State-owned Anadolu news agency identified them as 17-year-old Muhammed Enes Yeninar and his brother, 21-year-old Baki Yeninar, who was rescued after him.
They were both placed in ambulances and taken to hospital. Their condition was unclear.
Three other women, two in Hatay province and one in Kahramanmaras city, were also rescued on Tuesday, Turkish media reported.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 04:11(04:11 GMT)
Rohingya refugees donate blankets to Turkey earthquake victims
Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh have donated 700 blankets and 200 jackets to earthquake survivors in southeastern Turkey.
The donations were bought with cash contributions from Rohingya refugees living in camps in Cox’s Bazar and delivered to the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency’s offices in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, according to the Turkish state-run Anadolu Agency.
“Turkey has been one of our primary aid providers since the beginning of our crisis. How can we sit idle in the face of such a colossal calamity involving our dearest friend?” said Sahat Zia Hero, a Rohingya community leader.
“We are refugees here and dependent mostly on donations and assistance from others for survival. But this gift carries the unlimited love and solidarity to our Turkish brothers and sisters,” he added.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 03:30(03:30 GMT)
‘No one is helping us’: Desperation and anger in northwest Syria
Aid is slowly trickling into northwestern Syria more than a week after a pair of earthquakes devastated the region, but residents say the supplies are too little, too late.
In the rebel-held town of Jindires, rescuers who have been appealing for heavy equipment still have not received any as they continue to remove the remaining bodies in the rubble.
“Across the border in southern Turkey, missing survivors are still being found alive and pulled from the ruins. But here in northwest Syria, the search and rescue effort was called off on day five because rescuers did not have the resources that say could have saved many lives,” said Al Jazeera’s Zeina Khodr, reporting from Jindires.
Residents of the town told Al Jazeera they have been left to deal with the disaster on their own.
“We are vegetable sellers, our shops were underneath our homes, and now we lost everything,” said Alan Ahmed, pointing to a pile of rubble where his house once stood. “We are sleeping in the streets. No one from the international community is helping us.”
“We have no heaters, no blankets, nothing,” said Nizar Al Mared, another survivor. “Just a tent over our heads. Our shops were destroyed. Who will help us rebuild our lives?”
- 15 Feb 2023 - 03:20(03:20 GMT)
Turkey’s Kahramanmaras is like a ‘mass graveyard’: AJ correspondent
Excavators have begun clearing the rubble in Turkey’s Kahramanmaras as rescuers wrap up search efforts in the hard-hit city.
Al Jazeera’s Stefanie Dekker, reporting from the site of a flattened building, said it was “overwhelmingly the dead that are being brought out from the rubble”.
“This city has become a mass graveyard. It is like this across huge areas of the city,” she said, standing amid piles of rubble and tangled iron rods. “And the buildings that stand are broken. They are structurally unsafe. Their residents will never be able to go back home.”
People in the city, which is close to the epicentre of last week’s earthquakes, are still in a state of shock and disbelief, she said.
“People here are devastated. They cannot believe this has happened,” she added.
- 15 Feb 2023 - 03:06(03:06 GMT)
UN appeals for $397m to provide shelter, food to Syrian survivors
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has launched an appeal for $397m to help earthquake victims in Syria, saying the funds would bring “life-saving relief” for nearly five million Syrians and would cover a period of three months.
“One week after the devastating earthquakes, millions of people across the region are struggling for survival, homeless and in freezing temperatures. We are doing all we can to change this. But much more is needed,” Guterres said in New York City.
He called on member states to “fully fund this effort without delay” and said the money will provide “desperately needed, life-saving relief for nearly five million Syrians — including shelter, health care, food and protection”.
Guterres also urged that aid workers be allowed to operate freely in Syria, already wracked by 12 years of civil war.
He added that the UN is in the final stages of preparing an appeal for quake-ravaged southern Turkey.
Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies