Disaster in Turkey and Syria


Written by Meda Bliudziute, A & E editor

Citizens in Turkey and Syria are left in shock after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit the town of Gaziantep on February 6, 2023, toppling buildings and killing tens of thousands of people. The earthquake’s death toll has reached over 40,000 people, injuring over 100,000. The worst part about the disaster is that it occurred especially early in the morning, when people were still inside their buildings, sleeping and unaware of what would come. 

Earthquakes occur when pressure builds upon one of the Earth’s plates, causing it to jerk across and move the surface. In this case, pressure built upon the Arabian and Anatolian tectonic plates caused them to ground against each other, resulting in the devastating quake. From there, the quake radiated towards the northeast which brought the devastation to central Turkey and Syria.

The quake was registered as a 7.8, which is classified as major on the official magnitude scale. On average, there are fewer than 20 earthquakes over 7.0 magnitude every year. Seismologists say that this quake is potentially one of the deadliest this decade. 

The Turkish government has received mass criticism because of its lack of response to the disaster. Just hours after the earthquake struck, no military forces were sent to the affected areas, leaving people to fend for themselves. Many residents reported that there were very minimal professional rescue services offered for the first two and a half days after the quake. 

Even 9 days after the quake, survivors are still being pulled from the rubble. Citizens of Turkey and Syria are left in terrible conditions in this harsh winter with no homes from the earthquake. If you would like to help the people of Turkey and Syria in their recovery from this devastating earthquake, you can donate online by visiting this link: https://help.rescue.org/donate/syria-crisis?ms=ws_explainer_fy23_syria_mmus_feb&initialms=ws_explainer_fy23_syria_mmus_feb&_ga=2.126679757.1990765034.1676944301-714418173.1676944301