Earthquake Turkey and Syria, the death toll rises: over 4,300

7 days of national mourning proclaimed

The tragic death toll in the earthquake measuring 7.7 on the Richter scale that occurred yesterday on the border between Turkey and Syria continues to grow. There are already over 4,300 confirmed victims (at least 2,921 in Turkey and 1,451 in Syria) and the number could continue to rise in the coming hours. Many are still missing under the rubble and over 20,000 injured.

Meanwhile, the rescue machine has been set in motion from all over the world, including Italy. Turkey has “received offers of help from 45 countries, in addition to the European Union and NATO”, said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who proclaimed 7 days of national mourning. Ankara has formally asked for help from NATO allies. According to the request, sent by Ankara, Turkey needs medical staff and equipment, various search and rescue units and “field hospitals”, particularly suitable “for the adverse weather conditions”.

And this morning there were already 13,000 rescuers, many of them volunteers, who had left Istanbul in the last 12 hours to reach the earthquake areas. Many of them headed to Hatay, where there would be a lack of crews needed to extract the people trapped under the rubble.

The planes loaded with aid from Iran and Iraq also landed in Damascus with about 70 tons of food, medicines and blankets. The essential supplies were delivered this morning.