An Emergency Within an Emergency

At least 2,400 people were killed in the massive earthquakes that struck Turkey and Syria over the weekend. But, the death toll will rise dramatically with “tens to thousands of citizens… waiting underneath the rubble” just in Hatay.

Serkan Topal (CHP opposition party deputy in Hatay), surveyed the destruction in his devastated province.

At 4:17 AM Sunday morning, the first earthquake struck near Gaziantep in Turkey. It registered 7.8 on Richter Scale. Nine hours later, the second quake struck near Kahramanmaras with a magnitude of 7.5. Multiple aftershocks occurred, including one that was as high as 6.5.

Sometimes buildings may appear perfect at first, but then collapse hours later.

A small tsunami struck further away, along the Mediterranean coast.

The situation in northern Syria could be worse.

Mark Kaye, spokesperson for the International Rescue Committee, was quoted in the New York Times as saying, “Anywhere else in this world, this would be an emergency.” “What we have is an emergency within an immediate emergency in Syria.”

Now, the civil war in Syria is entering its 12th year. It is not difficult to see how the country’s building codes have never met Western standards. The country’s infrastructure has also been the victim of more than a decade worth of fighting, shelling and airstrikes.

Some videos and photos were too painful for me to share in this column.

Some miracles have also occurred, such as the one below.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Turkey stated on Twitter that search and rescue teams had been dispatched to the area immediately. The emergency cabinet meeting was held by President Bashar al-Assad of Syria, but no further news has been reported from the capital.

Here is the USGS map showing the initial quake. The area most severely affected is located approximately 200 miles northeast of Malatya, near the Turkish coast/Syrian border.

Pray for the people along this line, and their families and friends spread all over the world. They could really use your prayers right now.