Ankara, 13 Feb. At least 31,643 people died and another 80,000 were injured in the 7.7 and 7.6 magnitude earthquakes that devastated southeastern Turkey last Monday, and also claimed at least 3,575 lives in Syria.
The new data, provided by the Turkish emergency agency Afad, comes as today still victims are found alive among the rubble of thousands of buildings that collapsed in the ten provinces most affected by the earthquake. earth.
Several people were saved alive this morning.
A 40-year-old woman was found alive after 170 hours trapped in the remains of a house in the city of Gaziantep, while in Antakya a man was found alive.
Given these rescues, some experts have called for precautions to be taken when removing the rubble, both because of the possibility of there being survivors and not to damage the bodies of the victims.
Ahmet Ovgun Ercan, a prestigious geophysicist from Istanbul Technical University, estimated on the social network Twitter that there could still be 155,000 bodies in the rubble.
In Syria, the government and the White Helmets rescue organization have stopped regularly updating their casualty tolls.
Other sources cite higher figures, such as the so-called Salvation Government of the Islamist Levant Liberation Agency alliance, which controls much of the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib, the last bastion of the Syrian opposition, and which ensures that only their areas have recorded more victims than the report of the White Helmets for all the rebel areas.
Turkish authorities have reported that some 158,000 people have been evacuated to other provinces.
Non-compliance with building regulations and successive amnesties granted by the government to buildings built without permits explain the huge death toll, according to a complaint from the Turkish College of Architects.
“The main reason for this huge tragedy is the permission given to buildings constructed without observing building regulations,” Emin Koramaz, president of the Union of Chambers of Architects and Engineers of Turkey (TMMOB), told EFE today.
Koramaz assures that in the 20 years that the AKP, the party of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has been in government, there have been eight major legalizations of “dangerous, rotten and illegal” buildings and that they had been built and inhabited without the corresponding licenses
Several Turkish media today recall that during the campaign for the 2018 presidential elections, Erdogan toured the areas most affected by the 7.7 and 7.6 magnitude earthquakes last Monday, announcing that housing problems hundreds of thousands of citizens had been resolved through what he called “building peace”.
“We have solved the problem of 205,000 citizens of Hatay with the peace of construction. We are solving a very important problem of our citizens in Gaziantep, as in the rest of our country, with the peace of reconstruction,” he said. he announced during the 2018 campaign of the president, who is seeking re-election on May 14.