Türkiye Earthquake: New 6.4 Magnitude Earthquake Struck the Struggling Area
A 6.4 tremor shook the city of Antakya, not far from its border with Syria, where a series of earthquakes on February 6th left 44,000 people dead and tens of thousands without homes in both countries. On Monday morning, some buildings weakened by previous quakes collapsed in Türkiye and Syria alike – only to be followed soon after by an intense 5.8 magnitude aftershock that occurred just three minutes later. Even though none were as powerful as this second shockwave, there’s still been dozens more since then – all part of this major event that is now being felt across both nations.
Nearly 300 People Injured in the Earthquake, 18 of Them in Serious Condition
Dr. Fahrettin Koca, the Health Minister of Türkiye, reported that 294 people were injured in this recent earthquake – 18 of them critically hurt. Luckily enough, due to the 6 February earthquake occurring beforehand and leaving much of the area deserted when this one struck, it appears as though the death toll remained relatively low compared to what could have happened otherwise. An atmosphere of distress and panic overwhelmed the city of Antakya as ambulance sirens wailed in tandem with rescue teams rushing to provide aid for those most impacted by tumbling structures.
Tears streaming down her face, resident Muna al-Omar cradled her seven-year-old son as she recounted to Reuters news agency the terror of feeling like “the earth was going to split open under her feet” while they were in a tent located in the city center. Ali Mazlum, 18 years old, spoke with AFP news agency about his experience witnessing walls crumble around him and those he cherished: “You don’t know what to do…we grabbed each other”. He had been searching for the bodies of family members from previous earthquakes when these new tremors struck again.
Türkiye President Erdoğan: “Those Who Build Shoddy Buildings Will Be Held Responsible”
During his visit to the southern province of Osmaniye, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan pledged to bring those responsible for subpar construction that caused fatalities in the initial earthquake two weeks ago to justice. “It is our duty as a nation and government not only to provide assistance but also make sure everyone with any accountability face repercussions,” he declared. After the quake, local authorities issued more than 100 arrest warrants regarding buildings that had crumbled during it – an action which some interpreted as attempting to deflect collective guilt from this tragedy.
On Tuesday, as the area continued to heal from the recent earthquake, Orhan Tatar, head of Türkiye’s crisis and emergency agency, advised those living in troubled areas to be aware of any falling rubble.
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