Two emergency numbers for inquiries about Sri Lankans in Turkey

Two emergency numbers for inquiries about Sri Lankans in Turkey

February 7, 2023   12:02 pm

The Embassy of Sri Lanka in Ankara has set up two emergency telephone numbers to inquire about or provide information on the Sri Lankans living in Turkey where two powerful earthquakes and a multitude of aftershocks killed more than 4,300 people.

Accordingly, the following numbers have been introduced for this purpose: 00903124271032 / 00905344569498

Earlier today, Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Turkey Hasanthi Dissanayake appealed to the members of the public to convey any information about Sri Lankans living in Turkey as the death toll from the powerful earthquakes and aftershocks that rocked a swathe of Turkey and northwest of Syria on Monday (Feb 06) continues to rise.

Joining ‘Ada Derana Mornings’ show, the Sri Lankan envoy said information can be submitted to the Consular Division of the Foreign Affairs Ministry (0112 446 302) or the Sri Lankan Embassy in Ankara.

Speaking on the current developments of the situation in Turkey, the ambassador said as per reports, approximately 270 Sri Lankans are living in Turkey, out of which 14 were found to be living in the earthquake-hit Kahramanmaras, Gaziantep and Adana areas.

One Sri Lankan female remains missing although the other 13 were traced and confirmed to be safe, Dissanayake added.

The ambassador said they are still unaware of her whereabouts, adding that they are taking necessary efforts to locate this woman, who had been living a building that had collapsed in the quake. However, this woman had not been there when the incident occurred.

According to the Sri Lankan embassy, the woman had been in touch with her daughter and a friend. She has been in a building that has collapsed, but later it was thought that all in the building has come out; then there was information that her mobile phone was discovered.  The embassy said it has reached out to ASAD (Disaster and Emergency Management Agency under the Turkish Presidency) to assist in this regard.

The embassy also mentioned that all five Sri Lankans in Kayseri Province, where a tremor of a magnitude of 3 occurred, followed by a second tremor of a magnitude of 3.2.

A massive earthquake of a magnitude of 7.8 struck southern Turkey and northwest of Syria in the early hours of Monday while freezing cold weather added to the plights of the victims. The epicentre ws close to the southern city of Gaziantep and tremors were felt as far away as Cyprus, Cairo and Mosul.

It was followed by a multitude of aftershocks and a second powerful quake of a magnitude of 7.5, which hindered the search and rescue operations. It occurred 67km northeast of Kahramanmaras in Turkey at a depth of 2km at around 13:30 local time.

The areas of Kahramanmaras, Gaziantep, Diyarbakir, Malatya, Sanliurfa, Antakya/Hatay, Osmaniye, Adana, Adiyaman and Kilis have experienced the highest impact of the disaster.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) says that at least 100 aftershocks measuring 4.0 or greater have occurred since the first earthquake struck southern Turkey on Monday morning.

Foreign media reported that aftershocks stretch for more than 300 kilometers (186 miles) along the fault zone that ruptured in southern Turkey, oriented from southwest to northeast and stretching from the border with Syria up through the province of Malatya.

Rescuers are in a race against time to save people trapped beneath the rubble after thousands of buildings collapsed in both Syria and Turkey.

-with inputs from agencies 

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