Relief worker in front of rubble in Syria
Earthquakes struck Syria and Turkey on February 6, claiming thousands of lives and destroying thousands of buildings. Photo courtesy of Caritas Syria

On February 6, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake devastated large areas of central Turkey and northwest Syria. The death toll has surpassed 45,000 and continues to climb. The earthquake is the worst to strike Turkey this century. Later that day, the region experienced a second magnitude 7.7 quake.  
Across affected areas in both countries, apartment buildings and schools have been leveled. For Syrians, the damage took place in areas already devastated by years of war. In Turkey, the airports and the high roads of Anatolia are closed and most hospitals are unusable. Schools have been closed across the country.
Catholic Relief Services will support emergency relief efforts led by local partners in both Syria and Turkey with Caritas Internationalis, Caritas Syria in Aleppo and Lattakia—where extensive damage has been reported—and other local partners. Already in Turkey, Caritas Internationalis, in coordination with authorities, is bringing displaced people to safe, open spaces and distributing hot meals and clothing.

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