At least 4,372 deaths have been confirmed and thousands injured in powerful earthquakes in Turkey and Syria, according to agencies and officials. So far, Turkey and Syria were hit by four consecutive devastating earthquakes.
Turkey’s toll rose to 2,921 as of Tuesday morning, reports said quoting Yunus Sezer, Turkey’s head of disaster services.
A total of 15,834 injuries have been reported, Sezer said in a news conference in Ankara. Sezer said he would provide a more comprehensive update later. In Syria, 1,451 deaths and 3,531 injuries have been reported by officials.
The magnitude 7.8 quake brought down whole apartment blocks in Turkish cities and piled more devastation on millions of Syrians displaced by years of war.
It struck before sunrise in harsh weather and was followed in the early afternoon by another large quake.
Rescue efforts are ongoing, and the number of people killed, injured and displaced probably will climb, reported Washington Post. The initial quake of 7.8-magnitude was followed by dozens of powerful aftershocks, including one recorded at 7.5 magnitudes in the same fault zone of south-central Turkey on Monday afternoon. Most of the damage is in southern Turkey and northern and central Syria.
It is the strongest earthquake to hit Turkey in more than 80 years. Thousands of emergency responders have been searching for people amid the rubble of collapsed buildings, and medical teams have been tending to the injured. The full scale of the damage is still being determined.