Turkey: 2 more earthquakes of magnitudes 7.6, 6 hit country
Two more earthquakes of magnitudes 7.6 and 6.0 on the Richter scale rocked Turkey on Monday, merely hours after a powerful 7.8-magnitude quake struck the country, said reports. Less than 12 hours ago, the first tremor hit southeastern Turkey and neighboring Syria, killing 1,900 in both countries. The second quake struck Kahramanmaras Province's Elbistan district in southern Turkey, while the third hit central Turkey.
Second quake's epicenter 67km northeast of Kahramanmaras: EMSC
The US Geological Survey (USGS) pegged the intensity of the second earthquake that hit Turkey at magnitude 7.5. The shallow quake struck four kilometers south-southeast of Ekinozu at 1:24 pm local time (3:54 pm IST), the USGS said. However, the European Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC) reported it was a 7.7-magnitude earthquake that hit 67km northeast of Kahramanmaras at a depth of two kilometers.
Visuals of second earthquake shared on Twitter
Horrific scenes as second earthquake, reported to be as high as magnitude 7.5, hits southern Turkey.— Gabriel Gavin (@GabrielCSGavin) February 6, 2023
Here, a news crew in Diyarbakir captured the moment another residential building collapses amid the tremors. pic.twitter.com/5ecNKLYTcs
Independent scientific organization EMSC confirms reports
#Earthquake (#deprem) confirmed by seismic data.⚠Preliminary info: M7.8 || 13 km S of #Elbistan (#Turkey) || 6 min ago (local time 13:24:50). Follow the thread for the updates👇 pic.twitter.com/kS7s2EQZIE— EMSC (@LastQuake) February 6, 2023
Damage is serious: Kahramanmaras Governor Omer Faruk Coskun
According to AFP, following the second quake, Kahramanmaras Governor Omer Faruk Coskun stated that it was too early to determine the death toll because many structures had been demolished. "It is not possible to give the number of dead and injured at the moment because so many buildings have been destroyed," he said, adding that the "damage is serious."
780+ killed in Syria in back-to-back quakes
According to reports, at least 783 people died in Syria's government-controlled and rebel-held territories. The 7.8-magnitude tremor, followed by two major ones just hours later, destroyed vast areas of major Turkish towns inhabited by millions of refugees fleeing Syria's civil war and other crises. The first quake is being reported as the "biggest earthquake" to date in both Syria and Turkey.
50 aftershocks reported after first earthquake
According to reports, more than 50 aftershocks were reported after the first 7.8-magnitude earthquake on Monday. The second 7.5-magnitude earthquake shook the region while the search and rescue efforts were still underway. Tremors from the second quake were felt as far away as the Turkish capital of Ankara and the city of Erbil in Iraqi Kurdistan, as per AFP.
Israel, Ukraine offer help in emergency response
Meanwhile, Ukraine said on Monday that it was ready to send emergency responders to Turkey following the deadly earthquake. "Ukraine stands ready to send a large group of rescue workers to Turkey to assist in crisis response," Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Twitter. Israel also has extended assistance to earthquake-stricken Turkey, as well as Syrian victims, said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Turkey falls under world's worst earthquake zones
Turkey is situated on major fault lines, making it one of the world's most active earthquake zones. Notably, a powerful earthquake struck northwest Turkey in 1999, killing over 17,000. It is now facing the threat of a flood as a result of back-to-back earthquakes. Earthquake experts have urged officials to inspect the region's dams for cracks as soon as possible to prevent flooding.
No tsunami threat following earthquakes: Report
According to Turkey's state-run Anadolu Agency, there is currently no tsunami threat to the Eastern Mediterranean Sea following the major earthquakes that rattled the Middle Eastern country. Meanwhile, additional rescuers have been dispatched to rescue those trapped beneath the rubble even as the death toll is expected to grow.