Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared a three-month state of emergency after the death toll from Monday’s catastrophic earthquakes topped 5,000 and continued to rise. The World Health Organization warns the number of dead could ultimately increase eightfold, with some 23 million people affected by two major earthquakes that struck southeastern Turkey and northern Syria. Hundreds of aftershocks followed. The quakes caused thousands of buildings to collapse, trapping people under rubble amid freezing temperatures. In Turkey’s border province of Hatay, residents anxiously searched for loved ones among the wreckage.
Cennet Inal: “Our relatives are dead. My sister’s daughter died. She was 17. My sister-in-law’s children are stranded under rubble. She’s there with three children. They are not rescued yet. God, please help us. Please pray for us. I beg you: Pray for us. Pray for us. There are aftershocks. It’s uncertain what will happen to us.”