ELAZIG, Turkey — A powerful earthquake hit eastern Turkey late on this Friday (24 January 2020). The neighboring countries also felt the earthquake. It is reported that at least 22 people died and more than 920 injured.
Elazig province is situated 340 miles east of the capital Ankara. The magnitude 6.8 quake and dozens of aftershocks struck Elazig province.
Sixteen people killed in Elazig province and four in the neighboring province, Malatya, AFAD (Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Authority), said on Saturday 25 January.
Suleyman Soylu Interior Minister said emergency workers were searching for people under the rubble. He also said that at least ten buildings collapsed due to the earthquake.
State broadcaster showed the video of many workers searching in the collapsed building. Many windows and balconies had crashed to the ground.
Workers worked with drills and mechanical diggers to remove plaster and bricks where the night temperature reached -8 degrees celsius.
A man in the town of Sivrice, Elazig province, said that his house collapsed, and he cannot go inside them.
Sinasi, a man, said that In his village, some people lost their lives. He hopes God would help him. He also said that my animal died. His family gathered around the fire, covered with blankets to spend the night.
The USGS reported that about half a million people felt strong shaking. Several neighboring countries also felt an earthquake, including Iraq, Lebanon, and Syria.
President Tayyip Erdoğan said that all relevant departments were taking measures to guarantee safety. President Tayyip had sent Interior health and environment ministers to the earthquake-hit area.
In the past, a powerful earthquake hit Turkey
Turkey has a history of earthquakes. A 7.6 magnitude earthquake had hit Turkey in August 1999, which killed more than 17,000 people and made a half million people homeless.