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Statement on Türkiye-Syria Earthquake

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Statement on Türkiye-Syria Earthquake

In the early hours of Monday, February 6th of 2023 a devastating earthquake hit Turkey, Leading to thousands of lives lost and immeasurable damage. The impact of this earthquake extended beyond the country’s borders to Syria, where days later aftershocks and even new earthquakes continue to ravage both countries. The number of people affected by the earthquake has surpassed 24 million individuals, 1.5 million of those being kids. The death toll has now risen beyond 12,000.

We, as LeMSIC (Lebanese Medical Students’ International Committee), would like to send our deepest condolences and express the utmost sympathy with the individuals affected by this Natural Disaster. The pain felt by the families of the victims and survivors is beyond our imagination. Furthermore, as the entire area, Including Lebanon, is still under threat of further seismic activity, LeMSIC encourages residents of the country to take precautions and follow earthquake safety guidelines until the threat has subsided.

Earthquakes have long been deemed as some of the deadliest natural disasters, accounting for nearly 60% of disaster-attributed death beyond the year 2010. The impact of an earthquake grows in magnitude when it hits in an area that is already considered vulnerable and socio-economically unstable. Turkey remains the country hosting the highest number of refugees, and in January, It was declared that the need for Humanitarian aid in Syria has reached an all-time high for the past 12 years. Local resources are sparsely capable of achieving long term recovery, or even remediating and palliating the short term destruction happening at the moment.

This is a call for local, national and international action. The victims of this earthquake are in dire need of humanitarian aid; aid which should not be shunned under the banner of sanctions and international political conflicts. The Lebanese Red Cross, Army and Civil Defense forces has sent teams to Turkey and Syria to assist in the search and rescue efforts, and certain international and national organizations have been sending supplies and resources to the ravaged areas. This is a crucial period which calls for global solidarity in the face of disaster, and relief must reach all affected areas.

Full solidarity,

Lebanese Medical Students’ International Committee (LeMSIC)