In the Aegean Sea (between Greece and Turkey) there was a heavy earthquake on Friday afternoon. Initial estimates put at least 12 dead and 400 injured, the Turkish Disaster and Emergency Services Authority (AFAD) reports.
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The earthquake has also caused damage to buildings and roads in Greece and Turkey. Turkish authorities report that rescue teams are looking for victims at 17 damaged or collapsed buildings.
One of the dead is said to have drowned. Two teenagers were killed when they ended up under a collapsing wall.
According to the Athens Seismological Institute, the quake had a magnitude of 6.6. The epicenter of the quake was just north of the island of Samos, but the quake was also felt in the Greek capital. According to the AFAD, nineteen aftershocks followed after the earthquake.
Residents of Samos, an island of about 45,000 inhabitants, are advised to stay away from the coastal areas. There was a small tsunami in the coastal town of Vathy. According to local media, the earthquake on the island resulted in damage to buildings, among other things.
The quake could also be felt in the Turkish city of Istanbul. In the coastal city of Izmir, the quake led to, among other things, a collapsed building and a flood, reports the news agency Reuters.
According to the mayor of Izmir, Tunc Soyer, about twenty buildings have collapsed in the province of the same name. The governor of the province reports that 70 people have been removed from the rubble. A small tsunami is said to have also occurred in the Turkish district of Seferihisar.
The Netherlands is ready to help Greece and Turkey after the severe earthquake, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said at his weekly press conference on Friday. The Prime Minister spoke of a “terrible report”.
“We are available if we can help,” said Rutte. “We sympathize very much with Turkey and Greece.”