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Turkey earthquake: Girl survives 10 days under quake rubble

A teenage girl has been rescued 248 hours after last week’s devastating earthquake in Turkey.

17-year-old Aleyna Olmez was pulled from the rubble in Kahramanmaraş, a southern city near the epicentre.

Her uncle tearfully told rescuers “we will never forget you”, as he hugged them one by one.

Aleyna survived, injured and in freezing weather conditions, for 10 days. But rescues like hers are becoming increasingly rare.

More than 41,000 people have died in Tukey and neighbouring Syria from the 7.8 magnitude earthquake. Neither country has revealed how many people are still missing.

Aleyna was gently prised from the ruins of a flattened apartment block, Turkish broadcaster TRT Haber reported.

“She looked to be in good health. She opened and closed her eyes,” Ali Akdogan, a coal miner who took part in the rescue, told AFP news agency.

“We have been working here in this building for a week now… we are happy whenever we find a living thing – even a cat,” he added.

But the celebrations did not last long. Shortly after the rescue, Turkish soldiers ordered people to leave the scene, because teams were finding corpses that would soon be carried out.

In the same city, three women and two children were found alive on Wednesday.

Meanwhile the United Nations (UN) launched a “flash appeal” on Thursday for $1bn in aid to help the victims in Turkey.

The funding will help 5.2 million people over the next three months and allow aid organisations to “rapidly scale up” their support, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said in a statement.

And in Syria, the UN said that more than 100 trucks loaded with aid have crossed into the north-west of the country, since the Syrian government agreed to allow the UN to use two more border crossings.

The aid included tents, blankets, heaters, food, medicines and cholera testing kits, the organisation said.

source: BBC