Dozens of aftershocks with magnitudes up to 5.2 in Turkey

The earthquake region on the border between Turkey and Syria does not stop. A magnitude 5.2 earthquake hit Turkey’s Niğde province on Saturday, according to the Kandilli earthquake monitor. The epicenter was in Bor district. Shortly before, there had been several earthquakes of magnitude 4, according to AFAD, the Turkish civil protection authority. Initially, there was no information about casualties or damage. The death toll in both countries has risen to over 50,000.

More than 60 aftershocks were recorded in Syrian locations in 24 hours, the country’s earthquake center announced on Saturday. Two earthquakes were reported in neighboring Iraq, state news agency INA reported. According to the Rudaw news site, they had magnitudes of 4.3 and 4.0. Initially, there were no reports of casualties or damage.

According to the judiciary, at least 184 people were arrested in Turkey on suspicion of negligent action in relation to collapsed buildings. Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag announced on Saturday. Several buildings in the affected region were not built to be earthquake proof. Criticisms were raised that compliance with applicable building standards was often not verified.

Two million lost their homes

Prisoners include contractors. The mayor of Nurdağı district in Gaziantep province, Ökkeş Kavak, was also detained, state-run Anadolu news agency reported. Countless buildings withstood the devastating earthquakes of early February. According to the Turkish government, more than 173,000 buildings were destroyed in eleven provinces of the country. Nearly two million people lost their homes.

Two continental plates meet in the affected region and the risk of earthquakes is correspondingly high. On February 6, two earthquakes measuring 7.7 and 7.6 shook southeast Turkey and northwest Syria. According to Turkish sources, this was followed by over 9,000 aftershocks.