7.2-Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Turkey
October 24, 2011

7.2-Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Turkey

A 7.2-magnitude earthquake in Turkey has left buildings crumbled and a death toll of over 270 and counting.

The earthquake struck a town of around 75,000 people on Sunday morning, even collapsing an 80-story building.

The provincial capital Van also was struck severely by the quake, causing most of the mud brick homes to be destroyed.

"Because the buildings are made of mud brick, they are more vulnerable to quakes. I must say that almost all buildings in such villages are destroyed," Turkish prime minister Tayyip Erdogan said in a press conference.

According to one report, 24 people had been pulled from rubble alive in two hours during the first morning after the quake.

Celebibag is another area in Turkey that is suffering greatly through this natural disaster.

"There are many people under the rubble," Veysel Keser, the mayor of the district of Celebibag, told NTV. "People are in agony. We can hear their screams for help."

Erdogan said at least 93 people were killed in Van alone, and there have been 350 who have been injured so far.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, over 100 aftershocks in eastern Turkey within 10 hours of the quake were recorded, including one with a magnitude of 6.0.

TRT television reported that around 150 inmates fled after a prison in Van had its walls collapse.  However, a prison official said the number was smaller and many returned.

Turkey lies in one of the world's most active seismic zones and is crossed by a number f fault lines.

Two earthquakes in 1999 with a magnitude of over 7 struck northwestern Turkey and killed about 18,000 people.

In March 2010, 51 people were killed in eastern Turkey after a 6.0-magnitude earthquake.


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