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Turkey quake toll rises to 217

By The Assam Tribune

ANKARA, Oct 24 (IANS): Rescuers frantically searched for survivors as the toll in the 7.2-magnitude earthquake in Turkey's Van province rose to 217, a minister said Monday.

The temblor, the worst to hit the country since 1999, left 100 people dead in the city of Van and another 117 in the worst-hit town of Ercis, Interior Minister Idris Naim Sahin was quoted as saying.

Sahin, in charge of emergency operations, said a total of 1,090 people were injured.

He said that in Ercis alone about 80 multistory buildings collapsed when the earthquake struck Sunday, reported Xinhua.

He added that some 40 buildings still had people trapped inside, giving rise to fears that the toll could increase substantially. He did not give any estimates.

Hundreds of rescue teams worked throughout the night searching for survivors among dozens of damaged buildings. Aid groups scrambled to set up tents, field hospitals and kitchens to assist thousands left homeless.

"Rescue work is ongoing, especially at buildings where (rescuers) have determined survivors," Sahin said.

Turkish Industry Minister Nihat Ergun said Monday that Turkey will provide support for small businesses affected by the earthquake, according to a report posted on the website of Turkish newspaper Today's Zaman.

Nihat Ergun said at a conference in the capital of Ankara that ministries would work together on an economic aid package in response to the quake.

Dozens of countries and organizations offered condolences and help to Turkey after the earthquake hit Van province Sunday, Turkish semi-official Anatolia news agency reported Monday.

Dozens of countries and international orgnisations, including the US, Britain, Israel, China, NATO and the UN, have offered to help Turkey after the earthquake.

Schools in Van will be suspended for the next three days.

A total of 1,275 rescue teams from 38 Turkish provinces have reached Van province, a TV report said.

Turkey, lying atop the North Anatolian fault, has been plagued by frequent quakes. On March 8, 2010, at least 38 people died after a 6.0-magnitude earthquake hit the Elazig province in eastern Turkey.

A major earthquake hit Van province in November 1976, leaving 5,291 dead. The province has a population of just over 1 million.

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Turkey quake toll rises to 217

ANKARA, Oct 24 (IANS): Rescuers frantically searched for survivors as the toll in the 7.2-magnitude earthquake in Turkey's Van province rose to 217, a minister said Monday.

The temblor, the worst to hit the country since 1999, left 100 people dead in the city of Van and another 117 in the worst-hit town of Ercis, Interior Minister Idris Naim Sahin was quoted as saying.

Sahin, in charge of emergency operations, said a total of 1,090 people were injured.

He said that in Ercis alone about 80 multistory buildings collapsed when the earthquake struck Sunday, reported Xinhua.

He added that some 40 buildings still had people trapped inside, giving rise to fears that the toll could increase substantially. He did not give any estimates.

Hundreds of rescue teams worked throughout the night searching for survivors among dozens of damaged buildings. Aid groups scrambled to set up tents, field hospitals and kitchens to assist thousands left homeless.

"Rescue work is ongoing, especially at buildings where (rescuers) have determined survivors," Sahin said.

Turkish Industry Minister Nihat Ergun said Monday that Turkey will provide support for small businesses affected by the earthquake, according to a report posted on the website of Turkish newspaper Today's Zaman.

Nihat Ergun said at a conference in the capital of Ankara that ministries would work together on an economic aid package in response to the quake.

Dozens of countries and organizations offered condolences and help to Turkey after the earthquake hit Van province Sunday, Turkish semi-official Anatolia news agency reported Monday.

Dozens of countries and international orgnisations, including the US, Britain, Israel, China, NATO and the UN, have offered to help Turkey after the earthquake.

Schools in Van will be suspended for the next three days.

A total of 1,275 rescue teams from 38 Turkish provinces have reached Van province, a TV report said.

Turkey, lying atop the North Anatolian fault, has been plagued by frequent quakes. On March 8, 2010, at least 38 people died after a 6.0-magnitude earthquake hit the Elazig province in eastern Turkey.

A major earthquake hit Van province in November 1976, leaving 5,291 dead. The province has a population of just over 1 million.