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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Death toll could hit 1,000 as hopes fade for victims of Turkish quake

Via The Vancouver Sun, excerpt :

" Desperately hoping they would pull out her daughter Hatice alive, Constanze Hasimoglu murmured "Oh God, oh God, please," as rescue workers drilled and hammered through the rubble of her home.

"The rescuers have detected a voice, but I don't know if it is her," she said, sobbing.

As the earthquake struck the eastern Turkish city of Van, Constanze received a telephone call from her daughter. "She said 'Hello hello' and then the line went dead," she said.

The 23-year-old had been waiting to receive a friend at home when the quake struck on Sunday. The block of eight apartments had crumbled to a heap of concrete rubble.

"She is a sweet, kind girl. She is easily scared. When they would shake the desks at school to simulate an earthquake she would flee the room. I don't know how she can survive this," said Aishe Minas, a friend.

Many of the buildings in the remote towns on the mountainous expanse close to the Iran border, where the quake struck, were too ramshackle to withstand the tremors.

Throughout the provincial capital city of Van, which has a population of 500,000, and in Ercis, 13 miles from the epicentre of the earthquake, more than 80 apartment blocks were flattened."

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