Turkey earthquake: Death toll passes 430

A two-week-old baby girl was rescued from the rubble of a collapsed building

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The death toll from an earthquake in eastern Turkey has risen to 432 people, officials said, as rescue teams raced to find survivors beneath the rubble.

At least 1,352 others were injured in Sunday's disaster, officials said.

Three generations of the same family - a two-week-old baby girl, her mother and grandmother - were found alive by rescue workers in the town of Ercis.

An aftershock with a magnitude of 5.4 shook the province of Van, where Ercis is located on Tuesday afternoon.

At the scene

We've been watching rescue teams at the wreckage of one building for the last seven or eight hours. Unfortunately, no survivors have been found here. There have been bodies, including a family of four - a mum in her mid-30s and three daughters including a baby aged about one year.

A mound of masonry and rubble, radiators, sofas and bedding is believed to contain a further 40 or 50 people who remain unaccounted for.

Hopes of finding any more people alive are running out. That said though, overnight, other people have been found alive in other areas of the town.

People here are angry about the fact that some buildings in the town have been affected very badly by the quake while others don't appear to have been affected at all.

The Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research Institute said the epicentre of the aftershock was Degirmenozu, between the city of Van and Ercis, which was worst hit in the disaster.

In Van, prisoners set fire to a jail and fought their guards following the aftershock, because authorities refused to let them out, reports say.

Earlier, a two-week-old baby Azra Karaduman was found by rescue workers after she survived for almost 48 hours in rubble.

Hours later, her mother, Semiha, was pulled from a flattened building, where she had been pinned next to a sofa, the AP news agency reports.

"I am so excited. What can I say? Let God help them," the child's other grandmother, Sevim Yigit, told Reuters news agency.

The baby's father is still missing, although he was thought to be alive hours earlier.

Earlier, as a pregnant woman and her two children were also pulled out of the rubble, reviving hopes for those still searching for loved ones.

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Every so often, there is a call for silence. The drills, saws and generators stop, and one of the rescuers shouts into the rubble, listening intensely for any sounds of life. ”

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escue teams with sniffer dogs continued to search for survivors under the rubble through the night and into Tuesday.

Cranes have been lifting slabs of concrete, and many residents have been joining in the rescue effort, digging with shovels.

In Ercis, Derya Coskun, her daughter Elif and son Ozer were removed from the debris after being found by emergency workers.

TV footage showed a couple, a police officer and his wife being pulled out of a public building, the AFP news agency reports.

But hopes are fading for many more who remain unaccounted for, and Turkish officials warn that the death toll is likely to rise.

In one building, there are fears that up to 50 could be buried under the rubble.

'Shivering'

Turkish officials have promised more aid to those in need, saying 12,000 more tents would be delivered to the region.

Thousands of homeless people in the cities of Van and Ercis slept in tents or outside for a second night on Monday.

Survivors and opposition politicians have criticised the government for failing to provide enough supplies.

Earthquake area

  • One of Turkey's most earthquake-prone zones
  • Kurdish-populated
  • Ercis, an eastern city of 75,000 close to the Iranian border, was the worst-hit
  • Van, large ancient city of one million on a lake ringed by mountains, less affected

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay, in charge of the relief operation, said late on Monday that "from today there will be nothing our people lack".

His announcement came after some survivors complained that not enough help was reaching them.

"We shivered all night long, nobody provided us with any blankets or heaters, we don't even have a toilet," one woman, who is staying in a tent, told the BBC.

In Ercis, a lorry loaded with supplies was mobbed by young men who climbed the sides to claim tents and blankets, leaving the older and less able shouting in anger.

Opposition politicians earlier decried what they called "a lack of crisis management" and said Ankara was wrong to refuse offers of foreign aid.

Turkey is particularly vulnerable to earthquakes because it sits on major geological fault lines.

Turkey earthquake map

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