Death toll from quake in Turkey exceeds 8,500
ISTANBUL. Feb 8 (Interfax) - The death toll from a strong quake in Turkey has reached 8,547, while the number of those injured has exceeded 49,000, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday.
"The number of deaths from the quake with the epicenter in the Kahramanmaras province has reached 8,574, while 49,133 people have been injured and 6,444 buildings have been destroyed," Erdogan said in Kahramanmaras, where he arrived on Wednesday to coordinate search-and-rescue efforts. The Anadolu news agency quoted his statement.
Previous reports said that the quake killed 6,957 and injured 38,200 in Turkey.
Turkey is using "every instrument and resource" to clean up the quake aftermath, Erdogan said. The victims can stay at hotels in Antalya, Alanya and Mersin, and all families affected by the quake will receive 10,000 liras (about $530). According to him, new homes will be built in the quake-stricken areas over the year, he said.
Erdogan called for relying exclusively on the information from the Disaster and Emergency Management Agency (AFAD) in quake-related issues.
Meanwhile, the EFE agency reported 2,662 deaths in the quake in Syria. The overall death toll in both countries has exceeded 11,200.
A strong quake early Monday morning and its subsequent aftershocks killed thousands and inflicted substantial damage in several Turkish provinces and neighboring Syria.