1 killed, 69 injured in new deadly earthquake in eastern Turkey

Turkey’s government “will do whatever it takes to prepare all our cities for disasters”

Turkey’s disaster and emergency management agency AFAD reported that one person was killed and 69 people were injured, when strong earthquake struck Turkish eastern province of Malatya today.

According to disaster relief agency’s preliminary reports, the tremors from the new quake could be felt in other provinces of the country.

The magnitude 5.6 earthquake originated at a depth of approximately seven kilometers with the epicenter located in the Yesilyurt district.

More than 20 buildings have reportedly been destroyed in the latest quake.

According to Turkey’s Minister of National Education Mahmut Ozer, about 20 earthquake victims, including those rescued from the rubble of the flattened buildings, were taken to hospital in the aftermath of the disaster.

The search and rescue operation continues, AFAD reports and so far, 32 people were saved in Malatya after the latest tremor.

Today’s earthquake is the latest major aftershock to hit the country as it recovers and rebuilds from earlier massive quakes that killed more than 50,000 people across southern Turkey and northwest Syria.

Malatya was among the Turkish provinces that was seriously affected by the twin quakes on February 6. Many buildings were weakened by the initial disaster, increasing the risk of their collapse in subsequent tremors.

Hundreds of aftershocks followed the initial strike in the ensuing weeks, some lethal in their own right. Last Monday in the evening, several people were killed and hundreds got injured after the already devastated Hatay province was hit.

Nearly 10,000 aftershocks have been reported since February 6, according to AFAD.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on Monday that the government “will do whatever it takes to prepare all our cities for disasters.” It will not permit the construction of high-rise buildings in areas damaged by the quakes and will ban all construction near fault lines, he said.

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