Three weeks since the February 6th earthquakes and subsequent aftershocks, the disaster’s death toll continues to climb. The earthquakes and underlying vulnerabilities resulted in the deaths of at least 56,000 people in Turkey and Syria. Aid workers are among those killed.
On February 8th, Turkey’s President Erdoğan admitted to problems with his government’s initial response amid frustration with the pace of relief and the earthquake’s devastation. Turkey is investigating some contractors, but the entire political and economic system is arguably implicated.
An earthquake Flash Appeal for Turkey was announced on February 17th and covers February to April 2023. Turkey’s Flash Appeal requests USD 1 billion to reach 5.2 million people.
At least 230,000 buildings were damaged or destroyed across 11 provinces in Turkey.
According to the World bank’s Global Rapid Post-Disaster Damage Estimation (GRADE) Report, direct damages in Turkey from the earthquakes are estimated at USD 34.2 billion. The report says the reconstruction costs “will be higher depending on the extent of new construction codes and guidelines being used.”
The International Organisation for Migration reports that 3 million people have been displaced by the earthquakes in Turkey.
UNDP said the earthquakes generated at least 10 times as much rubble in Turkey as the last big earthquake in 1999. Both Turkey and Syria face the daunting task of disposing of hundreds of millions of tons of rubble, some of it potentially harmful.
In Turkey, access to education has been hampered for nearly 4 million children, including 350,000 refugee and migrant children.