Gov’t to provide rental assistance to quake victims: Erdoğan

Gov’t to provide rental assistance to quake victims: Erdoğan

Gov’t to provide rental assistance to quake victims: Erdoğan

The government will rebuild quake-hit regions as part of the one-year reconstruction plan and will provide one-year rental payment aid for victims of the devastating Feb. 6 earthquake if they do not want to accommodate in tents, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Feb. 10.

“We will ensure that our citizens who do not want to stay in tents can move to residences by paying the rent for one year,” Erdoğan said, speaking in Adıyaman province.

“We are preparing to give 15,000 liras per household, including the relocation aid. We are preparing a comprehensive program that will enable the country to stand up again, especially in the earthquake zone,” he stated.

“We have already started preparations,” Erdoğan said, noting that construction will start quickly.

Turkish Airlines has been flying the victims free of charge, he said. At least 76,000 people were evacuated from the quake-hit 10 provinces and dispatched to other parts of the country, Erdoğan added.

The state will intervene in acts of malfeasance taking place, having an authority received with the state of emergency in 10 provinces for three months, Erdogan added. “Some ignorant people are robbing markets and attacking workplaces. Necessary sanctions will be applied to those who commit these abuses under the state of emergency as soon as they are caught,” he stated.

Search and rescue works have been completed in southern Sanlıurfa and Kilis provinces, Erdoğan announced.

The death toll from powerful earthquakes in southern Türkiye climbed to 18,991, with 75,523 others injured, Erdoğan said, stressing that the country faced one of the biggest disasters in its history.

Erdoğan acknowledged that the state could not intervene in the disaster at the “desired pace.”

“The destruction had affected so many buildings in such a large area that though we gathered the world’s largest search and rescue team with more than 140,000 people, we have not been able to accelerate the interventions at the speed we desire,” he stated.

The response operation was “very difficult” to conduct as the devastating effect of the earthquake spread over an area of 500 kilometers, he said and added, “The fact that the region is experiencing an intense winter that we have not encountered recently has been another obstacle before us.”

“We will not allow those who want to turn this pain into political plunder,” the president emphasized.