HomeWorldEarthquake Survivors in Turkey and Syria Are Threatened by Freezing Conditions

Earthquake Survivors in Turkey and Syria Are Threatened by Freezing Conditions

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According to officials, more than 21,000 people were killed and tens of thousands were injured after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Turkey and Syria on Monday.

According to the World Health Organization, cold and snow could lead to “worsening and horrific conditions” for survivors, many of whom are homeless.

Rescue workers are working against the clock to pull people from collapsing structures. Some encouraging progress has been made in Turkey, but a humanitarian organisation reports that optimism is fading in northwest Syria.

A massive global relief effort is gathering steam. The World Bank provided $1.78 billion in aid to Turkey on Thursday, including emergency funding for basic infrastructure reconstruction and assistance to earthquake victims. However, the efforts of 100,000 or more rescue workers on the ground are hampered by logistical challenges such as a lack of vehicles and severely damaged roads.

The United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, warned that the full scope of the disaster was still “unfolding before our eyes,” particularly in Syria, where a protracted civil war had decimated the country.

On Thursday, the first UN humanitarian aid entered northwestern Syria through the Bab al-Hawa crossing in Idlib. The crossing is the only way for UN aid to reach the region without passing through Syrian government-controlled territory.

Hundreds of thousands of Syrians have been forced to flee their homes in the dead of winter. When temperatures drop below freezing in Syria’s northwestern region, a large number of people live in makeshift shelters, mosques, and the rubble of demolished structures.

According to CNN, “tens of thousands of families are currently homeless throughout northwest Syria” as a result of the earthquakes, according to Mousa Zidane, a volunteer with the “White Helmets,” also known as Syria Civil Defense.

The volunteer organisation announced that rescue efforts in opposition-controlled northern Syria will continue through Friday. However, the organisation stated that the chances of finding survivors are “fading.”

The countrysides of Aleppo and Idlib in northern and northeastern Syria, respectively, are affected.

The magnitude 7.8 earthquake was one of the strongest to strike the region in over a century. The Turkish Disaster and Emergency Management Agency requested international assistance in response to significant aftershocks.

To aid relief efforts in both countries, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies initiated “immediate cash assistance” from its Disaster Response Emergency Fund.

On the ground, many more organisations are also responding. You can contribute by clicking here.

Info Source – The Business Times Online

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