The devastating consequences of the 7.7 and 7.6 magnitude earthquakes that struck on the Turkey-Syria border recently have continued to worsen as the official death toll in Turkey rose by almost 4,000 to 35,418, while the death toll in Syria has risen above 5,800.
In the ongoing rescue efforts, over 8,000 people have been rescued in Turkey, as the number of people under the rubble in the two countries remains unknown.
In a recent report, UNICEF revealed that thousands of those that died in the disaster were children and added that over seven million children were affected.
The report stated: “While the total number of children affected remains unclear, 4.6 million children live in the 10 provinces of Turkey hit by the earthquakes, and more than 2.5 million children are affected in Syria.”
According to WHO regional director for Europe, Hans Kluge, the development was the worse natural disaster in the region.
Kluge said: “We are witnessing the worst natural disaster in the WHO European region for a century, and we are still learning about its magnitude.
“The needs are huge and increasing by the hour. Some 26 million people across both countries need humanitarian assistance.”
In a statement, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan admitted the disaster was a social catastrophe that had destroyed buildings and countless lives.
Erdoğan promised that response strategies capable of compensating for the losses in the disaster would be implemented.
He said: “We will relieve the pain, heal the wounds and compensate the losses of this disaster together, without ever falling into frustration, weariness, fatigue or despair.”
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