- UN and international approach to disasters
- European Civil Protection Mechanism as a Model for International Mechanisms
- UN and international reaction to earthquake
- The Turkish Case
- Northwest Syria
- European Civil Protection Mechanism as a model for dealing with earthquake
- The Stalemate
- Existing Variant
A devastating 7.7-magnitude earthquake struck southeastern Turkey, near the border with Syria, in the early hours of Monday, February 6, 2023, followed by several aftershocks, killing thousands of people and injuring a lot more in Turkey and Syria. While the death toll continues to rise1, this earthquake is by far the largest earthquake Turkey and Syria have seen in a century.
Although the earthquake has led to destruction in dozens of cities and towns in northwestern Syria, its catastrophic results were mainly concentrated Jendiris, Harem, Salqin and Atarib2. And despite the horror of the tragedy caused by the shock of the disaster, the Syrian Civil Defense Organization (The White Helmets) showed, in cooperation with the local community, a highly-appreciated response. The Syrian society has shown great integrity and solidarity amidst a prevalent chivalry spirit in all areas. Instead of the cross-border or via-airports aid, convoys were launched from the least affected cities, towns and villages in response to the appeal of the most affected ones. In addition, young men and women volunteered in the rescue and humanitarian response teams, while the humanitarian organizations mobilized their teams to provide shelter for the afflicted.
With the first moments of the earthquake, public bodies, civil society organizations and activists appealed to the United Nations and civil society to respond to this disaster. Correspondingly, The Syrian Interim Government and the Syrian Civil Defense (The White Helmets) declared the areas of Northwest Syria a disaster area.3
However, as the first convoy of UN aid entered on the fifth day, the tardy response of the United Nations and the international community raised dozens of questions and inquiries among Syrian citizens in northwestern Syria about the reasons for this situation. Convoys of Syrian victims’ corpses entering through the border crossings without restrictions have increased Syrians’ doubts.