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Syria: Earthquakes


Aid provided by the International Organization for Migration was distributed to displaced families in Azaz, north-west Syria after it was brought in through the Bab Al-Salam crossing. 15 February 2023. Photo credit: UNOCHA/Madevi  Sun Suon

In the early hours of 6 February 2023, multiple earthquakes, the strongest being of 7.7 magnitude struck southern Türkiye and northern Syria. The earthquakes have created a disaster of colossal proportions and the casualty numbers keep climbing.

The earthquakes which hit communities at the peak of winter, have left hundreds of thousands of people, including small children and older people, without access to shelter, food, water, heat and medical care in freezing cold temperatures.

Close to 9 million people in Syria have been affected by the devastating earthquakes. The damage is worse in the north-west, where more than 4.2 million people have been affected in Aleppo, and 3 million people have been affected in Idlib.  More than 7,400 buildings have been completely or partially destroyed.

On 14 February, the Secretary-General António Guterres launched a Flash Appeal for the response in Syria requesting almost US$400 million for the next three months that will support 4.9 million people.

On the same day, the Inter-Agency Standing Committee Principals agreed to designate a humanitarian system-wide Scale-Up for the earthquake response in Türkiye and Syria. The Scale-Up helps organizations and partners to rapidly mobilize the necessary operational capacities and resources to respond to critical humanitarian needs on the ground. As of now, the Scale-UP remains for Syria.