08:08 (CET): Opposition MP demands Turkish telecommunications authority answers for Twitter throttling
Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) MP Tuncay Özkan went to Turkey’s Information Technologies and Communication Authority (BTK) demanding an explanation to Wednesday’s restrictions on social media.
“We called countless times, but apparently they were in a meeting,” Özkan said in a video he posted on Twitter. “We came here to get information on the throttling of Twitter and social media.”
The lawmaker was faced with an “empty building”, he said in later posts. “There is only a department director in the building, and he doesn’t know and can’t answer anything.”
CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu said the party will “always” monitor authorities, in a message of support to Özkan.
07:30 (CET): Turkey’s state TV waits for AFAD before shooting
Footage showing citizens protesting against Turkish state TV channel TRT reporters has been posted on social media, with one of the survivors of Monday’s earthquakes saying that the cameras arrived before Turkey’s Disaster Response Authority (AFAD) rescue operations started in Turkey’s Kurdish-majority province of Adıyaman (Semsûr).
“We have been here since yesterday, there is no working team or anything. Today the cameras of TRT Haber came and they are waiting for the AFAD team to shoot,” said the earthquake survivor.
07:04 (CET): Death toll rises to 9,057 in Turkey
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan updated the death toll in Turkey to 9,057, at a press conference in Hatay, where he arrived from Kahramanmaraş on the third day of the disaster.
07:04 (CET) Sea level rises in southern Turkey’s port town due to earthquake
The sea level has risen in Hatay’s port town İskenderun, flooding the roads, squares and workplaces along the coast in the Çay neighbourhood on Wednesday, due to Monday’s massive earthquakes. All buildings on the coastline were evacuated.
07: 03 (CET) Turkey accepts aid by Republic of Cyprus
Turkey have accepted the offer of aid by the Republic of Cyprus on Wednesday, reversing its earlier decision to refuse.
Cypriot Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Tuesday that Turkey had responded “Thank you, but we won’t take it” to the offer from the Greek Cypriot (Republic of Cyprus), which is not recognised by Turkey, to send a rescue team to the earthquake-struck region.
04:47 (CET) AFAD Earthquake Department’s Twitter account hacked
Hackers say people’s lives “should not have so little value” and plead with Turkish authorities to “do something about it” as they hack Twitter account of Turkey’s Disaster Response Authority (AFAD).
03:30 (CET): Fire at Iskenderun port extinguished on third day
Mayor of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Ekrem İmamoğlu has announced on his Twitter account that the fire which broke out at the port in the Iskenderun district of Hatay after the major earthquakes on Monday was extinguished on Wednesday.
Teams from Istanbul Municipality travelled on Monday to Hatay, one of the worst affected provinces in the earthquake, to assist in the search and rescue efforts.
03:20 (CET): Pro-Kurdish HDP continue to visit earthquake regions
Turkey’s pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Co-Chair Mithat Sancar and an accompanying delegation continue to visit the regions affected by Monday’s major earthquakes.
“The rubble you see is the collapse of disastrous governance, just like we saw in Antakya and Samandağ yesterday. The order of corruption and lack of control has collapsed on our people,” Sancar said in Adana on Wednesday.
02:49 (CET): Unidentified bodies will be buried after 24 hours, says AFAD
The bodies of those who have lost their lives in the earthquakes and cannot be identified within a waiting period of 24-hours will be buried in accordance with Islamic religious obligations after fingerprint samples and photographs have been taken for records, Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) announced on Wednesday.
01:55 (CET): Turkish president admits problems in initial response to earthquakes
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan admitted that there were some problems in the initial response to the earthquakes on Monday, but he said that “the situation was under control on the second day and today” during his visit to Kahramanmaraş, the epicentre of the 7.8-magnitude earthquake.
“I believe that my citizens have shown the same patience in this disaster as my nation has shown in such disasters so far. And they will show again in the future,” said Erdoğan and announced that a support of TL10,000 ($530) will be paid to families affected by the earthquake.
01:30 (CET): Earthquakes halt UN humanitarian aid to northern Syria
The flow of aid from Turkey to the northwest of Syria has temporarily stopped due to the major earthquakes, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Assistance (OCHA) announced on Tuesday.
OCHA Spokesperson Madevi Sun-Suon noted that aid workers were trying to figure out how to deliver aid to people in war-torn Syria. It is not clear when the aid to four million Syrians will start again, Sun-Suon told Reuters.
12:23 (CET): Turkey updates number of fatalities to 8,574
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has announced that the death toll has risen to 8,574, the number of injured to 49,133 and the number of destroyed buildings to 6,444.
The death toll is approaching 10,000 as search and rescue efforts continue for the third day after two massive earthquakes on Monday that affected ten cities in southeastern Turkey and northern Syria.
Turkey have announced that at least 7,108 people died from the earthquakes, and according to the latest figures recorded on Wednesday morning, at least 2,500 people died in Syria.
The fact that no search and rescue team has yet to arrive in some regions coupled with a lack of aid has driven victims of the earthquake to despair and anger, while the further drop in temperatures make search and rescue efforts even more difficult.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) declared a Level Three Emergency due to the devastating earthquakes in Syria and Turkey. This means the organisation is mobilising its assets.
“It is now a race against time,” said WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
“We have activated the WHO network of emergency medical teams to provide essential health care for the injured and most vulnerable,” he added.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced on Tuesday that he will visit the affected region today.
A fire which broke out after the major earthquakes on Monday at the port in the Iskenderun district of Hatay continues. The Turkish Ministry of National Defense announced yesterday that efforts to extinguish the port fire are taking place on land and by air.
Elsewhere, the district governor’s office of the Ağrı (Agıri) Patnos seized a vehicle belonging to the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) municipality which was on its way to deliver aid to the affected region.
“Preventing solidarity creates irreparable effects. Do not hinder solidarity!” said the HDP.