(TheLibertyRevolution.com)- A devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit southeastern Turkey and northwestern Syria last Monday leaving over 30,000 people dead.
The pre-dawn quake, centered in the Turkish town of Pazarcik in the country’s southeastern Kahramanmaras province, was followed by several powerful aftershocks. The first aftershock which followed just 11 minutes after the initial quake had a magnitude of 6.7. Another aftershock nine hours later measured 7.5.
Thus far, over 120 aftershocks have been recorded.
Thousands of buildings on both sides of the border collapsed. and the death toll is expected to rise as rescue workers continue searching the rubble for survivors. CNN reported on Thursday that in Turkey alone, over 5,700 buildings collapsed from the quakes.
While several factors contributed to the high death toll, CNN reported that the primary reason is that the earthquake struck at about 4:00 am while most people were asleep when the buildings collapsed.
Rescue workers have been hampered by the cold, wet weather that has slowed recovery efforts and made reaching some affected areas trickier.
While the international community has rushed to provide manpower and funds to aid in the recovery effort and aftermath, in a column at 19FortyFive, Michael Rubin argues against the US providing aid unless Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is held to account.
Rubin writes that the US should “speak up for all Turks in the name of accountability and transparency” and warns that Erdogan and his allies “monopolize” the construction industry which Rubin describes as full of corruption.
Additionally, Rubin writes that Erdogan must answer for why his government failed to heed the warnings from seismologists who said a large earthquake was inevitable.
Last week’s earthquake was one of the strongest to occur in Turkey since a 7.8 magnitude quake hit the eastern part of the country in 1939, killing over 30,000 people.
NBC News reported on Monday that the death toll from the earthquake and subsequent aftershocks has now surpassed 35,000.