| 23 April 2024, Tuesday |

Time running out to find survivors; death toll rises above 21,000

Rescue workers are combing through the pile of rubble in the hope to find survivors, three days after earthquakes rattled parts of Turkey and Syria. More than 21,000 died in the massive earthquakes and hundreds and thousands are injured and homeless, currently struggling in freezing temperatures.

With rescue operations underway, the chances of finding survivors have dimmed now. Experts have said that in the first 72 hours after the disaster, more than 90 per cent of quake survivors are believed to be rescued within the first three days.
As quoted by the news agency AFP, Ilan Kelman, a professor of disasters and health at University College London, said that “generally, earthquakes do not kill people, collapsing infrastructure kills people”.

Kelman, who has published research on quake rescue responses, said that the most important factor is getting medical attention to people who are stuck in the rubble. He said that they must revive help before “their bodies fail” or they bleed out.
Meanwhile, the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is calling for more aid access to northwestern Syria from Turkey. Guterres sought an expanded mandate from the UN Security Council to allow UN help to be delivered through more than one border crossing.

Guterres told reporters: “Many non-UN relief agencies are already delivering through other crossings. I will be very happy if, in relation to the UN, there will be the possibility to do it also in as many crossings as possible.”

  • Wions