More than 2,300 dead as quake destroys buildings in Turkey and Syria

The toll from the 7.5 magnitude earthquakes in southeastern Turkey continued to climb Monday morning as rescuers rushed to search for the injured, missing and dead under the rubble of fallen buildings.

THE last count at press time, the death toll in Turkey and Syria was over 2,300 and rising.

Reporters and amateur videographers captured scenes of terrifying destruction:

Large numbers of photographers were on the streets covering the aftermath of the initial quake, only to be caught in the equally powerful second quake with their cameras rolling:

At the end of the second earthquake, the buildings collapsed against each other like dominoes:

The first earthquake occurred before sunrise in freezing temperatures, so most local residents were inside. The second quake struck as rescuers tried to pull survivors out of already damaged buildings, putting even more lives at risk.

Shipwreck in the eastern city of Van, Turkey (Getty Images)

A partially collapsed building in Diyarbakir, Turkey. (Ilyas Akengin/AFP via Getty)

Rescuers search for survivors in Diryarkabir. (Ilyas Akengin/AFP via Getty)

The earthquake was powerful enough to collapse tall buildings into piles of rubble. (Ilyas Akengin/AFP via Getty)

An entire neighborhood of Sanliurfa, Turkey was wiped out. (STR/AFP via Getty)

Debris raining down from buildings struck pedestrians and crushed vehicles on the streets. (Ilyas Akengin/AFP via Getty Images)

Syrian cities also reported huge damage from the earthquake:

Aerial view of the devastated village of Besnia, Syria, in the rebel-held northwest province of Idlib near the Turkish border. (OMAR HAJ KADOUR/AFP via Getty)

A collapsed building in the town of Jandaris, Syria, in the rebel part of Aleppo province. (RAMI AL SAYED/AFP via Getty Images)

Syrian civilians inspect a destroyed building. (Anas Alkharboutli/photo alliance via Getty)

A building destroyed by the earthquake in Sarmada, Syria. (MOHAMMED AL-RIFAI/AFP via Getty)

The historic Gaziantep Castle, which dates back thousands of years to the Roman Empire and was recently used as a museum, was devastated by the earthquake:

The Turkish government said on Monday that the quake had not damaged its vital oil pipelines to Iraq, but the Ceyhan oil terminal in southern Turkey has urgently halted operations, companies say. maritime. Turkish local energy officials also said the flow of natural gas had been interrupted in several provinces due to damaged lines.

A video quickly spread on social networks of huge explosions of fire on gas pipelines ruptured by the earthquake:

Later Monday morning, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) announced that the Iraqi oil export pipeline from Kirkuk would be closed until a “thorough inspection of the pipelines is finalized”.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday the quake was Turkey’s worst disaster since the 1939 Erzincan earthquake, which killed nearly 33,000 people. The BBC noted that an earthquake in northwestern Turkey in 1999 killed 17,000 people, suggesting that Erdogan thinks the death and damage from Monday’s disaster could turn out to be worse that.


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