BRUSSELS: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday that the cost of the damage from last month´s devastating earthquake had risen to $104 billion, as donors at a conference in...
BRUSSELS: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday that the cost of the damage from last month´s devastating earthquake had risen to $104 billion, as donors at a conference in Brussels vowed funds to help Turkiye and Syria.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen kicked off a EU-hosted fund-raising event by promising one billion euros ($1.1 billion) for reconstruction in Turkiye and 108 million for humanitarian aid in Syria.
“The needs of the survivors are still massive and must be tackled with urgency,” von der Leyen said. Speaking by video link from Turkiye, Erdogan warned that “regardless of its economic standing, it is impossible for any country to fight a disaster of this scale on its own.”
The catastrophic 7.8-magnitude quake last month flattened entire cities, killing more than 50,000 people across southeastern Turkey and parts of war-torn Syria. Millions were displaced and last week´s flash floods in the region only added to the misery.
The United Nations has set the “recovery costs” for Syria at $14.8 billion. Aid groups urged donors to step up their commitments after the UN complained of the poor level of response to a call it made in mid-February for urgent funding. The International Rescue Committee (IRC), said they should at least ensure that the UN´s emergency appeal for $1 billion for Turkiye and $397 million for Syria are fully funded.