- The second quake hit at 1:24 pm (1024 GMT), 60 miles north of first epicentre
- First quake struck early hours on Monday as people were asleep in their homes
- Follow live updates on the Turkish earthquakes with MailOnline’s live blog here
- WARNING: Contains distressing images
By CHRIS JEWERS FOR MAILONLINE
Turkey was hit by two massive earthquakes less than ten hours apart on Monday, killing more than 2,300 and leaving scores trapped under collapsed buildings – and plunging the region into an unfolding humanitarian crisis.
The initial 7.8-magnitude night-time tremor, followed hours later by a slightly smaller one, wiped out entire sections of major Turkish cities in a region filled with millions of people who have fled the civil war in Syria and other conflicts.
The later 7.5-magnitude quake struck at 1.24pm (1024 GMT) two-and-a-half miles southeast of the town of Ekinozu and around 60 miles north of the first quake that has wrought devastation across Turkey and Syria.
Hundreds are still trapped under rubble on both sides of the border. The World Health Organisation warned that it expects to see a ‘significant’ increase in the death toll as the disaster unfolds, and as rescue workers continue their search through mounds of wreckage for victims crushed in their sleep.
Heartbreaking videos and pictures from dozens of cities across the two countries have shown weeping parents carrying the lifeless bodies of their children in their arms, miraculous rescues executed by emergency responders, buildings slamming to the ground in seconds, and entire neighbourhoods reduced to rubble.Devastating moment buildings collapse after earthquake hits TurkeyProgress: 0%0:00PreviousPlaySkipMuteCurrent Time0:00/Duration Time1:08FullscreenNeed Text+91View gallery
Turkey has been hit by a second huge earthquake , hours after an earlier catastrophic quake devastated the region, killing more than 1,900 people and injuring thousands more, while toppling thousands of buildings. Pictured: The Turkish city of Hatay is seen after Monday morning’s quake levelled buildings across the region+91View gallery
Pictured: A Syrian man weeps as he carried the body of his son, who was killed in an earthquake that struck in the early hours on Monday morning, in the town of Jandaris+91View gallery
SYRIA: Residents retrieve an injured girl from the rubble of a collapsed building in the town of Jandaris, in the countryside of Syria’s northwestern city of Afrin in the rebel-held part of Aleppo province, on February 6. Rescue workers are desperately searching for survivors after the earthquakes struck across the region+91View gallery
Pictured: The girl is seen being carried away by rescuers having been pulled from the rubble+91View gallery
Rescuers carry out a girl from a collapsed building following an earthquake in Diyarbakir, Turkey on February 6. The first earthquake struck in the early hours on Monday morning as people slept in their beds. The second hit 60 miles north less than 12 hours later+91View gallery
Tremors from the first deadly quake – which lasted about a minute – were felt as far away as the island of Cyprus, Egypt and Lebanon, and a tsunami warning was briefly issued by authorities in Italy along the country’s coast. The second quake struck about 60 miles from the epicentre of the first, less than 12 hours laterTRENDINGTurkey and Syria earthquake today LIVE: Latest news and death toll19.9k viewing nowOver 1,400 killed as 7.8-magnitude earthquake hits Turkey and Syria230.4k viewing nowBefore and after shots show huge devastation after Turkish earthquake16k viewing now
Monday morning’s earlier 7.8-magnitude quake jolted residents awake. They fled from their homes in terror out into the cold, rainy and snowy night across southeast Turkey and northern Syria, taking shelter in cars as thousands of buildings collapsed.
As Monday rolled on, concerns grew for people trapped under the rubble as thousands of rescue workers across a 200-mile radius jumped into action, searching through tangles of metal and giant piles of concrete for survivors who could be heard calling out from underneath the wreckage.
Terrifying videos and pictures from across the region showed the destruction caused by the quake. One clip from the border town of Azaz, Syria, showed a rescuer desperately running through a field of debris with an injured child in his arms, while another showed the total collapse of a building in Sanliurfa, Turkey.
Monday’s first quake was centred north of Gaziantep, Turkey, which is about 60 miles from the Syrian border, has a population of bout 2 million, and is home to large numbers of Syrian refugees.
It struck at 04:17 am local time (0117 GMT) at a depth of about 11 miles, the US Geological Survey said. A strong 6.7 aftershock rumbled about 10 minutes later, causing more havoc. Turkey’s own agency said 40 aftershocks were felt.
Buildings were reported to have collapsed as far south as Syria’s cities of Aleppo and Hama to Turkey’s Diyarbakir – more than 200 miles north-east.
Tremors from the quake – which lasted about a minute and could be Turkey’s largest ever – were felt as far away as Greenland, the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland said. People also reported feeling tremors in Egypt, Lebanon and also Cyprus, while a tsunami warning was briefly issued by authorities in Italy.
Orhan Tatar, an official from the Turkish disaster agency, told reporters that the two quakes were independent of each other.
After a 3.8-magnitude earthquake struck Buffalo, New York in the United States, meteorologist Tyler Metcalf sugested on Twitter that the Turkey earthquake could have ‘destabilised faults across the world.’
Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management agency said there had been 1,498 fatalities as a result of the quake, with a further 7,600 injured, across ten Turksih provinces. The president earlier described it as the country’s largest disaster since 1939 (when 33,000 people were killed in the Erzincan earthquake).
‘Everyone is putting their heart and soul into efforts, although the winter season, cold weather and the earthquake happening during the night make things more difficult,’ he told reporters from Turkey’s disaster coordination centre in Ankara.
‘We do not know how high the casualty numbers will go as efforts to lift the debris continue in several buildings in the earthquake zone,’ he said.