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4-year-old girl rescued from collapsed Izmir building 91 hours after quake

4-year-old Ayda Gezgin, pulled from the debris hours after an earthquake shook Izmir, Turkey on 3 November 2020 [UR Interior Ministry/Anadolu Agency]
4-year-old Ayda Gezgin, pulled from the debris hours after an earthquake shook Izmir, Turkey on 3 November 2020 [UR Interior Ministry/Anadolu Agency]

A four-year-old girl has been rescued alive from a collapsed building in the Turkish city of Izmir yesterday, 91 hours after the strong earthquake that hit the Aegean last week.

Ayda Gezgin was found by Turkish firefighters and rescue services who pulled her out from beneath the rubble of the apartment building her family lived in. Wrapped in a thermal blanket and on her way to the waiting ambulance, surrounding crowds could be heard exclaimed "God is great!"

In a tweet, Izmir's Mayor Tunc Soyer said: "We have witnessed a miracle in the 91st hour…Rescue teams pulled out four-year-old Ayda alive. Along with the great pain we have experienced, we have this joy as well."

One of the rescuers, Nusret Aksoy, told reporters that he located Ayda after hearing her scream and finding her next to a dishwasher in the rubble, where she waved at him and said she was fine.

Ayda's father looked on as his daughter was being rescued; it has been confirmed that her mother did not survive the collapse.

The earthquake, which had a magnitude of 7.0 on the Richter scale, hit the Greek island of Samos on Friday afternoon and spread 14 kilometres northeast towards the city of Izmir and surrounding areas.

Over 1,464 aftershocks followed along with "mini-tsunamis" which flooded the province, making it the most destructive earthquake this year.

The death toll from Friday's earthquake and its aftermath has reached 100 today, with at least 994 injured and over 140 still being treated in hospital.

READ: 3-year-old rescued from rubble, Turkey quake death toll hits 81

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