After the severe earthquake in Türkiye and Syria last night, the Turkish government asked the international community for help. The quake had a magnitude of 7.8 on the Richter scale. More than 1.200 people were killed in both countries, according to figures so far. However, the numbers are rising rapidly and the damage to residential buildings and infrastructure is massive. Malteser International – the Order of Malta worldwide relief agency – has sent an emergency relief team to the affected region.
“Our colleagues in Gaziantep and Kilis tell us about the massive destruction caused by the quake there. Our emergency relief team has already been sent to the region. Our local partners are in urgent need of support, especially in the refugee areas in the north of Syria, where hundreds of thousands of people are living in simple shelters and are now defenseless after the earthquake. Temperatures in the region are currently freezing and it is raining extensively. In the hospitals of the partner organizations, the number of injured earthquake victims is increasing by the hour. So we have to provide help quickly,” says Oliver Hochedez, head of Malteser International’s emergency relief department.
The emergency team is coordinating first immediate measures and will then get urgently needed relief supplies on their way for the people.
Since 2012, Malteser International has been supporting health structures and water and sanitation in Syria through local partners, as well as providing care to Syrian refugees in Türkiye.
Photo-Credit: Ansa/EPA and Malteser International