Dozens Pulled From Rubble as Turkey Quake Death Toll Hits 38


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Turkish rescuers pulled more survivors from the rubble of collapsed buildings on Sunday in the aftermath of a powerful earthquake, but the death toll still rose to at least 38.

Nearly 4,000 people, helped by mechanical diggers, worked in freezing temperatures to comb through the debris in Elazig in the eastern part of the country left by the devastating 6.8-magnitude quake that struck Friday evening.

Authorities say that so far they have pulled 45 people from the rubble. Turkish television showed one mother, Ayse Yildiz, 35, and her 2-year-old daughter Yusra being rescued from the remains of a collapsed apartment building in Elazig. They had been trapped for 28 hours.

"Can you hear me?" video footage showed a rescuer calling to the mother. "We are coming. We will save you."

"Please get me out, I cannot stand it anymore. Get my daughter, I am nothing without my kid," she replied before being safely lifted out on a crane.

Syrian university student Mahmud al Osman told the state news agency Anadolu that he used only his bare hands to rescue a man and woman from underneath rubble.

Osman said he heard voices after the quake ended. Durdane and Zulkuf Aydin said they shouted when they saw Osman's telephone light before he and others helped rescue them.

"He is our hero and angel," a weeping Durdane Aydin told Anadolu.

The government's disaster and emergency management agency said more than 1,600 were injured in the quake, with 13 of them in intensive care.

Despite the rescue successes, the rescue teams continue to find more bodies, three in the center of Elazig, then hours later, two more.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to house displaced survivors as soon as possible.

"Turkey has begun to heal the wounds of this great disaster in unity, togetherness and coming together,'' he said.

Since Friday's quake, there have been 714 aftershocks, 20 of them above four in magnitude.