Over 21,000 dead, in Syria and Turkey earthquakes, miraculous rescues still happening

Several survivors were pulled out from under the rubble in Turkey, four days after the devastating earthquake that also hit neighboring Syria, boosting the morale of exhausted rescue teams, Reuters notes. Chances of finding other survivors dwindle dramatically as earthquake death toll passes 21,000.

According to the latest official figures, the 7.8-magnitude earthquake, followed by more than 100 aftershocks, killed at least 21,051 people, including 17,674 in Turkey and 3,377 in Syria, reports AFP. The WHO estimates that 23 million people are “potentially at risk, including around five million vulnerable people” and fears a major health crisis that would cause even more damage than the earthquake.

Cold, hunger and despair gripped hundreds of thousands of people left homeless by the earthquakes, the region’s deadliest in decades. Several people were rescued from the ruins of buildings overnight, including a 10-year-old boy rescued with his mother 90 hours after the earthquake in Samandag district of Hatay province. Also in Hatay, a seven-year-old girl, Asya Donmez, was rescued after 95 hours and taken to hospital, state news agency Anadolu reported. But hopes that many more will be found alive amid the rubble of thousands of collapsed buildings in the region’s cities and towns are fading.

The RO-USAR team deployed in Turkey supported, on Friday morning, the local authorities for removing a woman from under the rubble, who was later handed over to the medical crews.

For several hours, the rescue operations were continued by the national structures, with the support of the RO-USAR team. Thus, this morning, around 4:00 (local time), the Romanian search and rescue team supported the authorities premises to extract a survivor (a 55-60 years old conscious, cooperative woman). The person was handed over to the medical crews,” informed the General Inspectorate for Emergency Situations (IGSU).

On the last assigned mission, the RO-USAR team had identified, on Thursday evening, through technical search (acoustic sensors), the possible presence of some survivors. According to the locals, the collapsed building had 9 floors, IGSU mentions.

These days, Romanian rescuers also managed to pull out two parents and their baby from under a collapsed building. They were found holding the little one, dead. Firefighter: “I’ve never seen anything like this, maybe only in movies, an apocalyptic image. More than 90% of the buildings are uninhabitable.”

The baby girl saved in Syria named Aya, which means “miracle”

The baby girl born amid the rubble in Syria was named Aya, which means “miracle”. People around the world want to adopt her.

Thousands have offered to adopt the baby girl who was born under the rubble of a collapsed building in Syria following Monday’s earthquake.

When she was rescued, Aya – the girl’s given name, which means “miracle” in Arabic – was still attached to her mother by the umbilical cord. Her mother, father and all four of her siblings died after the earthquake hit the town of Jindayris.

Aya is now in the hospital. “She arrived on Monday in such a bad condition, she had swelling, bruises, she was cold and barely breathing,” said Hani Marouf, the pediatrician who takes care of her.

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