New 6.4-magnitude quake hits southern Turkey:
According to the disaster response organisation AFAD:
The 6.4-magnitude earthquake that struck Turkey on February 6 and killed more than 41,000 people already caused the most damage to Hatay, which is the southernmost area of the country.
At about 8:04 p.m. (1704 GMT):
The town of Defne experienced a significant earthquake that was strongly felt by AFP teams located in Antakya and Adana, which are 200 kilometers (300 miles) away.
Teams from AFP also felt the tremor in Syria and Lebanon.
Three minutes later:
The emergency management organisation announced a second 5.8-magnitude earthquake with the Samandag region in Hatay as its epicentre on Twitter.
An AFP reporter recounted frightening scenes in Antakya.
Previous earthquakes had forced dust clouds to rise in the already devastated city.
Several people called for help after severely damaged buildings’ walls crumbled, with some appearing to be injured.
In Antakya, 18-year-old Ali Mazlum told AFP that the earthquake occurred when he and AFAD were searching for his family’s death.
“You don’t know what to do…
we grabbed each other and right in front of us, the walls started to fall.
It felt like the earth was opening up to swallow us up.”
Mazlum was looking for the bodies of his sister and her family, as well as his brother-in-law and his family.
Mazlum had lived in Antakya for the previous 12 years.
A few meters away, a digger was clearing rubble from a road that had been covered by the recent earthquake.
“This one just fell,” one of the rescuers said, pointing to the collapsed structure.
The disaster agency advised residents not to approach the coast in the Mediterranean Sea province of Hatay because sea levels might climb by 50 cm.
In a tweet, Turkey’s Vice President Fuat Oktay urged people to follow authorities warnings and avoid damaged properties.
AFAD reports that the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that hit Turkey and Syria has left millions homeless and that more than 6,000 aftershocks have been recorded since the initial quake.
Officials warned that aftershocks could continue for a year due to the strength of the first tremor.
People in Aleppo, Syria, fled to the streets due to the recent earthquake, and reportedly, buildings that had been previously damaged by the quake in Azaz, a city further north, collapsed.
The death toll from the earthquake that occurred on February 6 currently stands at 41,156 in Turkey and 3,688 in Syria, but officials expect the death toll to rise as rescue operations continue.
Currently, rescue operations are only ongoing in Hatay and Kahramanmaras, as these were the provinces most affected by the tremors.
On Monday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised to construct nearly 200,000 new homes within a year, which would be no more than four-storey high and more sturdy.