On Monday, a new earthquake in the Turkey-Syria border region left six people dead and almost 300 injured. The earthquake occurred at 20:04 local time (17:04 GMT). The new earthquake comes two weeks after a larger quake (on February 6) that has killed more than 47,000 people and has left many more injured.
The latest earthquake was reported to be of 6.4 magnitude, and was followed by another 5.8 magnitude quake. The center of the earthquake was in Defne, in Turkey’s Hatay province. Defne was among the worst hit regions in the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit Turkey and Syria on Feb 6. The tremors of the quake were felt in Jordan, Cyprus, Israel, and Egypt.
New earthquake strikes Turkey and Syria
According to the European Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC), the earthquake struck at a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles).
Fahrettin Koca (Turkish Health Minister) said that 294 people were wounded, among whom 18 were seriously hurt and transported to hospitals in Adana and Dortyol. Also, Syria’s State News Agency (SANA) reported that 6 people were wounded in Aleppo from falling debris.
Turkey’s disaster management agency tweeted that a second 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck three minutes later, with the center in Hatay’s Samandag district.
So far, 32 aftershocks have been reported since the two quakes that happened on Monday. Many buildings, which had already sustained damage from the previous temblors, collapsed following the latest quakes.
Turkey and Syria’s continued struggle against the disaster
Turkey and Syria continue to suffer from the earthquake that first hit the countries on Feb 6. Authorities have reported more than 6,000 aftershocks since the first major earthquake of 7.8 magnitude. The first quake struck near the city of Gaziantep in Turkey’s south-central region.
Only nine hours after the first earthquake hit, the region experienced two more major quakes of magnitude 7.6 and 6.0. The earthquake was the strongest the country has experienced in the past 100 years.
The Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) reported that the death count in Turkey, since February 6, has risen to 41,156. The death toll is expected to keep increasing as emergency workers go through the collapsed buildings. 385,000 apartments are known to be destroyed or seriously damaged, and besides the death and injured count, many people are reported to be missing.
The world’s response to the earthquakes
The response to the disaster has been enormous among the world authorities.
The US State Department has so far provided humanitarian assistance worth $185 million to Turkey and Syria.
The UN has sent 197 trucks loaded with UN humanitarian aid to north-west Syria. The World Bank has announced that it will provide $1.78 billion for recovery after the earthquake.
India launched ‘Operation Dost’ aimed at assisting the search and rescue team in Turkey. The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and Indian Army teams are working round the clock to help the disaster-stricken nation.
The UK is leading NATO’s response to the earthquakes. So far, three Royal Air Force (RAF) aircrafts are helping deliver NATO’s emergency support packages to the affected areas. The RAF has also provided over 15 tons of humanitarian aid and 81 tons of medical aid to the people of Turkey and Syria.