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Rescuers pull dozens from rubble as Turkey quake death toll hits 31

Rescuers using their hands, drills and mechanical diggers continued searching for survivors at three sites in the province, Disaster and Emergency Authority AFAD said.

Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

ELAZIG – Rescue teams working through the night in sub-zero temperatures pulled 45 people from collapsed buildings, Turkey’s disaster authority said on Sunday, as the death toll from a powerful earthquake in the country’s east rose to 31.

Broadcasters showed footage of a 35-year old woman and her infant daughter being rescued from under the rubble 28 hours after the magnitude 6.8 quake struck Elazig province.

Rescuers using their hands, drills and mechanical diggers continued searching for survivors at three sites in the province, Disaster and Emergency Authority AFAD said.

It said the quake, which was followed by more than 700 aftershocks, killed 27 people in Elazig and four in the neighbouring province of Malatya. More than 1,600 sustained injuries.

AFAD urged residents not to return to damaged buildings because of the potential risk of collapse. It said officials had identified 645 heavily damaged and 76 collapsed buildings in the two provinces.

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