Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said yesterday that the damage caused by the twin quakes that hit the country on 6 February is estimated at $104 billion.
Addressing an international donor conference held in Brussels via video link, Erdogan said: "Regardless of its economic standing, it is impossible for any country to fight a disaster of this scale on its own." The devastating quakes killed over 56,000 people across southeastern Turkiye and parts of war-torn Syria. Thousands of others were wounded.
Erdogan said that his government is to build homes to house all those displaced by the natural disasters within a year, noting that 298,000 homes were damaged in 11 governorates."We will never forget the support of all friends, the European Union, the UN andother international organisations," he added.
READ: EU offers $1.1bn to help rebuild Turkiye after earthquake
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said: "The needs of the survivors are still massive and must be tackled with urgency."Von der Leyen had kicked off the fundraising by promising €1 billion ($1.1 billion) to support reconstruction in Turkiye and €108 million ($113.8 million) in humanitarian aid for Syria.
Moutaz Adham, Oxfam's director for Syria, said the fresh pledges could "be a lifeline for many Syrians who were already struggling with hunger, skyrocketing inflation, and poverty when disaster hit."He added: "But we need a long-term solution that goes beyond just humanitarian aid."