20,000 people: WHO forecast on the death toll in the earthquake in Turkey and Syria

News » Incidents

 20,000 people: WHO forecast for Turkey and Syria earthquake death toll

World Health Organization officials warned Tuesday morning that the death toll in Syria and Turkey from a devastating earthquake before dawn on Monday could top 20,000. More than 5,000 deaths have been confirmed in both countries to date as search and rescue teams continue to recover bodies from ruins of buildings destroyed by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake and its aftershocks.

Turkey has so far reported 3,432 confirmed deaths and more than 21,000 injured. In northwestern Syria, which is still divided between rebel-controlled and government-run cities, casualty data is slower to update. The Syrian government has now confirmed 812 dead and 1,449 injured in Aleppo, Latakia, Hama, Idleb and Tartus. An additional 790 deaths have also been reported in rebel-controlled areas.

5,775 buildings were reported destroyed in southern Turkey during the earthquake and aftershocks, including 1,500 buildings destroyed in Hatay province alone. More than 24,400 service personnel Emergency aid was sent to southern Turkey to search for survivors and treat the wounded.

Katherine Smallwood, World Health Organization emergency spokesperson for Europe, expressed pessimism about the total death toll, saying the final count could exceed 20,000 people.

“There is still a possibility of further collapses, so we may see an eightfold increase in the initial figures”,– Smallwood said, referring to a preliminary estimate of the death toll at 2,600. “Unfortunately, we always see the same thing with earthquakes – initial reports of the number of people killed or injured will rise significantly next week”.

Follow us on Telegram

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *