ANKARA: A 5.5 magnitude earthquake hit Turkey’s Golbasi town located in the Central Anatolia region of Ankara Province, reported the United States Geological Survey. “M 5.5 – 9 km ESE of Golbasi, Turkey at 8:43 am. Location:37.765°N 37.743°E and Depth:10.0 km,” reported USGS.
At least 100 aftershocks measuring 4.0 or greater have occurred since the 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck southern Turkey on Monday morning local time. As the time from the original earthquake extends, the frequency and magnitude of the aftershocks tend to decrease.
However, 5.0 to 6.0-plus aftershocks are still likely to occur and bring a risk of additional damage to structures that are compromised from the original earthquake. This brings a continued threat to rescue teams and survivors, reported CNN.
The aftershocks stretch for more than 300 kilometres (186 miles) along the fault zone that ruptured in southern Turkey, oriented from southwest to northeast and stretching from the border with Syria up through the province of Malatya.
More than 4,372 people have been killed and thousands injured after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck Turkey and Syria early Monday, according to officials and agencies.
Thousands of buildings collapsed in both countries and aid agencies are particularly worried about north-western Syria, where more than 4 million people were already relying on humanitarian assistance.
The quake, one of the strongest to hit the region in more than 100 years, struck 23 kilometres (14.2 miles) east of Nurdagi, in Turkey’s Gaziantep province, at a depth of 24.1 kilometres (14.9 miles), the US Geological Survey said.
Meanwhile, the first of two Indian disaster relief teams left for Turkey on Monday night, according to the Indian Air Force.
The Indian Air Force tweeted Tuesday that a C-17, a strategic transport aircraft, left for Turkey “bearing search and rescue teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF).”
India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) tweeted a similar post, writing, “The first batch of earthquake relief material leaves for Turkiye, along with NDRF Search and Rescue Teams, specially trained dog squads, medical supplies, drilling machines and other necessary equipment.”
The rescue efforts come in the wake of a deadly earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria on Monday. Soon after, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered his condolences with his office saying in a statement that “relief material would be dispatched immediately” in coordination with the Turkish government.
“Two teams of NDRF comprising 100 personnel with specially trained dog squads and necessary equipment are ready to be flown to the earthquake-hit area for search and rescue operations,” the statement said.
“Medical teams are also being readied with trained doctors and paramedics with essential medicines. Relief material will be dispatched in coordination with the Government of Turkiye and Indian Embassy in Ankara and Consulate General office in Istanbul,” it added.
India’s Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar also extended his condolences, tweeting Monday night that he had contacted his Syrian counterpart, Faisal Mekdad.
“Expressed solidarity and conveyed our support including through supply of medicines,” he tweeted. Planes carrying aid shipments from Iraq and Iran arrived at Damascus International Airport after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake devastated Turkey and Syria, Syrian state media SANA reported.
The Iranian aid arrived on Monday and the Iraqi aid was delivered early Tuesday morning local time, SANA reported. Mahdi Ghanem, an official at the Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs, told SANA that each plane carried about 70 tons of food, medical supplies, blankets and necessary supplies.
On Monday, Iraq’s Prime Minister Mohammed S. Al-Sudani announced they would send a shipment of emergency medical supplies, first aid and shelter supplies as well as medicine and fuel. Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian told Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad he would dispatch humanitarian aid to the area, Iranian state media IRNA reported.
Japan has also sent the country’s Disaster Relief Rescue Team in response to the earthquake in Turkey, according to a Monday statement by Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
“Upon the request of the Government of Turkey, and in light of humanitarian perspective and Japan’s friendship relations with Turkey, Japan has decided to provide this emergency assistance to Turkey to meet its humanitarian needs,” the statement read.
The Disaster Relief Rescue Team departed for Turkey on Monday night to support search and rescue operations, the statement read. (ANI)