Rescue workers pull 70-year-old man from Turkey earthquake rubble

Rescue workers pull 70-year-old man from Turkey earthquake rubble
A strong earthquake struck on Friday in the Aegean Sea between the Turkish coast and the Greek island of Samos (Emrah Gurel/AP)

A 70-year-old man has been rescued from a collapsed building in western Turkey some 34 hours after a strong earthquake in the Aegean Sea struck Turkey and Greece, killing at least 51 and injuring more than 900 people.

Ahmet Citim was pulled out from the rubble and was taken to hospital, with health minister Fahrettin Koca tweeting that the man said: “I never lost my hope.”

Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD) raised the death toll in Izmir, Turkey’s third-largest city, to 49 as rescuers pulled more bodies out of toppled buildings.

The death toll from the quake has risen to 46, officials said (Emrah Gurel/AP)

Two teenagers were killed on Friday on the Greek island of Samos, where at least 19 others were injured.

The quake, which the Istanbul-based Kandilli Institute said had a magnitude of 6.9, was centered in the Aegean north-east of Samos, while AFAD said it measured 6.6 magnitude and hit at a depth of about 10 miles.

A small tsunami was triggered in the Seferihisar district of Izmir, drowning one elderly woman, as well as on the Greek island.

The tremors were felt across western Turkey, including in Istanbul, as well as the Greek capital, Athens. Hundreds of aftershocks followed.

Turkey is prone to quakes due to the fault lines which cross it (Emrah Gurel/AP)

AFAD said 896 people were injured in Turkey.

Search-and-rescue teams continued work in nine buildings in Izmir as day broke on the third day.

Turkey is crossed by fault lines and is prone to earthquakes. In 1999, two powerful quakes killed some 18,000 people in northwestern Turkey, while earthquakes are also frequent in Greece.

The quake occurred as Turkey was already struggling with an economic downturn and the coronavirus pandemic.

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