‘Secondary disaster’ threatens as dramatic bailouts offer relief

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But in Kahramanmaras, near the epicenter of Monday’s 7.8-magnitude quake, NBC News witnessed one of many rescues that offered a glimmer of hope to the millions affected.

Dozens of rescuers scrambled around a 57-year-old woman, who was still conscious when she was pulled from the rubble of a building.

Wrapped in a gold-colored emergency blanket, she was rushed to the hospital.

It was Murat Kucuktecer, one of the many rescuers on the site, who first heard the woman’s voice. She survived days under the rubble because she was trapped in an isolated air pocket, Kucuktacer told NBC News.

“It was within a 20-inch space where there was enough air, so it survived,” he said. «It was a miracle, thank God.»

“This is the eighth person I have rescued alive. God willing, I still have hope,” she added, smiling, as he stood in front of craggy rubble and jagged cables rising from the ground.

In Gaziantep, there were tears of joy early Friday as 17-year-old Adnan Muhammed Korkut was pulled from the rubble fully conscious, after 94 hours trapped in the basement of a collapsed apartment building.

Unable to move for four days and determined not to starve, the teen survived by drinking his own urine, according to news agencies.

The video showed his mother, Buket Pakize, sobbing with joy, hugging and kissing him as he was carried away on a stretcher.

“My son does not leave me alone for even an hour. God blessed my son, who doesn’t leave me alone for an hour. May everyone else be blessed too,” she said, as those around her responded hopefully, “Amen.”

Overjoyed, one of the rescuers, a woman named Yasmen, hugged the teenager who seemed remarkably lucid after his ordeal.

“I have a son like you. I swear, I haven’t slept in four days,” she said, as she tenderly held Korkut’s face as he tearfully watched. «I was trying to get you out, I love you so much.»

Despite moments of joy on the ground, the death toll continued to rise and attention also turned to fears of a «secondary disaster» for those still without warm shelter, food and water in the border region, who home to more than 13.5 million people.

The World Health Organization said survivors desperately needed life support to meet basic needs like clean water and shelter in worsening weather conditions.

“We are in real danger of seeing a secondary disaster that may harm more people than the initial disaster, if we do not move with the same intent and intensity that we are doing on the search and rescue side,” the WHO said. about incidents. earthquake manager Rob Holden at a WHO news conference on Wednesday.

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