In southeast Turkey, where a series of strong earthquakes struck the area, search and rescue operations are still underway as rescuers battle against time to locate victims who are buried under debris.
Several cities experienced complete apartment complex collapses on Monday as a result of earthquakes with magnitudes 7.8 and 7.6 that occurred barely hours apart. More than 5,400 people have died in Turkey and 1,800 in neighbouring Syria.
Numerous stranded victims used social media to request assistance and give rescuers information about where they were after the accident.
Firat Yayla, a YouTuber known as Charmquell, was one of them.
He said in a video posted on his Instagram Stories early on Tuesday after the first earthquake he was stuck under the rubble in the central Antakya district of Hatay province, and pleaded with his followers to save him.
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“Friends, we are stuck under the earthquake,” he said in the video shot in a dark space. “Mother! Are you okay? Mother! Tell me you hid somewhere. Please help!” he added before ending the video with his home address.
He updated his Instagram later saying he had been saved, but his mother remained under the concrete.
A young man in another video trapped under debris in Iskenderun district of Hatay shared his address and said, ‘If you love your God, please come and save us.’
The video was widely shared on Twitter and was obtained by Africa Today News, New York.
Hatay is one of the Turkish provinces worst hit by the disaster. The airport is damaged and closed, making it harder for aid and rescue teams to reach the flattened city.
Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Authority said 5,775 buildings had been destroyed in the quake, and more than 20,400 people were injured.