Rescue members work as they search for survivors in the debris of a collapsed building, in Izmir, Turkey, on Monday. AP
Gulf Today Report
The overall death toll in Friday's earthquake reached 85 after teams found more bodies overnight amid toppled buildings in Izmir, Turkey’s third-largest city, on Monday.
In a written statement, Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD) noted that rescue operations are still ongoing amid the debris of eight collapsed buildings across the province.
Rescue workers in western Turkey extricated a 70-year-old man from a collapsed building on Sunday, some 34 hours after a strong earthquake in the Aegean Sea struck Turkey and Greece.
The man was pulled out of the rubble overnight and doing well at a hospital, according to the Turkish health minister.
Mourners attend a funeral ceremony for earthquake victims in Izmir. Reuters
The minister tweeted that the survivor, Ahmet Citim, told him, "I never lost hope.” The operation that saved Citim was the latest in a series of remarkable rescues after the Friday afternoon earthquake. But on the third day since the disaster, search-and-rescue teams appeared to be finding more bodies than survivors in Izmir, Turkey's third-largest city.
Relatives of Nazmiye Dograyan mourn during his funeral. AFP
They continued searching in eight toppled buildings, but work was paused at one when authorities determined the damaged structure next door was also at risk of falling, forcing rescuers and people waiting outside to retreat.
The earthquake was centred in the Aegean northeast of the Greek island of Samos.
Rescuers try to save residents trapped in the debris of a collapsed building in Izmir. AP
AFAD said 949 people were injured in Turkey, with more than 220 still receiving treatment. The earthquake also killed two teenagers on Samos and injured at least 19 other people on the island. Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay said 26 badly damaged buildings would be demolished in Izmir.
"It’s not the earthquake that kills but buildings,” he added, repeating a common slogan.
Aslı Eroğlu, a Turkish woman in Izmir, spoke to Gulf Today after the earthquake.
Aslı said, “The earthquake was very bad, I really still couldn't come back to myself…”
She and her friend Hasan Iyibildiren shared dramatic video clips from the Izmir incident.
A video showed a multistoreyed building crashing down. The site was engulfed in dust after the collapse.Rescue work was punctuated by hundreds of aftershocks. By Saturday afternoon search operations had been completed in eight buildings and were continuing in nine others, officials said.
One resident said both her parents were still trapped.
Mayor of Konya Metropolitan Municipality, Uğur İbrahim Altay said on Twitter, “Our search and rescue teams are ready to move to affected earthquake area if needed…”
İbrahim again tweeted, “In the first stage, our search and rescue team of 12 people moved to the affected area.”
People flooded the streets in the Turkish coastal city of Izmir after the earthquake, witnesses said. Footage from Turkish state broadcaster TRT Haber showed a collapsed building in central Izmir.
A video showed an injured man in his 40s tending to his relative after the collapse of a building.
Several people could be heard reciting verses from the Holy book in Izmir amid the cries of people stuck under the debris of a building.
People work on a collapsed building in Izmir, Turkey, on Friday. AP
In a rare show of unity amid months of tense relations over energy resources in the eastern Mediterranean, Greek and Turkish government officials issued mutual messages of solidarity over the quake toll.
Pope Francis on Sunday asked the faithful to pray for the people of the Aegean Sea.
Rescuers search for survivors in a collapsed building in Izmir. AFP
"It was a very big earthquake, it's difficult to have a bigger one," said Lekkas. Ali Yerlikaya, the governor of Istanbul, where the quake was also felt, said there were no negative reports.
At least 26 people have been died in Turkey earthquake, health officials said. A hospital official said the death toll is expected to rise. Aslı Eroğlu, a Turkish woman in Izmir spoke to Gulf Today after the earthquake.
The Turkey health minister tweeted that the survivor, Ahmet Citim, told him, "I never lost hope.” The operation that saved Citim was the latest in a series of remarkable rescues after the Friday afternoon earthquake.
Over a thousand buildings in southeastern Turkey collapsed due to tremors leaving dozens injured.
Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed said, “December the 2nd holds a special place in the story of the UAE, when our nation’s founding fathers joined together to establish the Union. As we celebrate our 51st UAE National Day, we pledge to continue our country’s progress and to keep striving to fulfill our shared ambitions.”
UAE's Embassy in London welcomed over 500 friends from the UK, UAE, and internationally to a grand reception at London’s famed Natural History Museum in South Kensington to commemorate 51 years since the founding of the UAE.
"On this day, we commemorate the bright memory of the Founding Fathers, led by the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and his brothers, the Founders of the Nation, as well as their determination, wisdom and vision that established the Union.”
President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan said that the 51st UAE National Day is a day to recall lessons of the past, and look at the present with awareness and contemplation, while looking to the future with hope, optimism and confidence.