Death toll surpasses 21,000 after Türkiye's earthquakes (UPDATED)
The death toll from Monday's major earthquakes has surpassed 21,000, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Saturday, News.Az reports citing Daily Sabah.
Erdoğan said that 21,043 people are confirmed to have lost their lives in the recent disasters, while 80,097 others were injured.
At least 20,665 people were killed and 80,088 others injured by two strong earthquakes that jolted southern Türkiye on Monday, the country's disaster agency said on Saturday, News.Az reports citing Anadolu Agency.
The magnitude 7.7 and 7.6 earthquakes, centered in Kahramanmaras province, affected more than 13 million people across 10 provinces, including Adana, Adiyaman, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hatay, Kilis, Malatya, Osmaniye, and Sanliurfa.
Several countries in the region, including Syria and Lebanon, also felt the strong tremors that struck Türkiye in the space of fewer than 10 hours.
More than 166,000 search and rescue personnel are currently working in the field, according to the Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD).
Almost 92,700 people have been evacuated from quake-hit regions so far, AFAD said.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday that the history of Türkiye is challenged by one of the biggest disasters regarding the quakes in the country's southern provinces.
To inspect the ongoing search, rescue and relief efforts, Erdogan has so far visited Kahramanmaras, Hatay, Adana, Gaziantep, Osmaniye, Kilis, Adiyaman, and Malatya, where he met earthquake victims.
The Turkish parliament on Thursday approved a three-month state of emergency to speed up aid efforts.
The country is also observing seven days of national mourning in the wake of the disaster.
Condolences have poured in from around the world expressing solidarity with Türkiye, with many countries sending rescue teams and aid.