Demirta?: Government only arrived in Van 24 hours after the earthquake

by editor | 25th October 2011 9:12 am

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Mayor Kaya said Van was caught unprepared in the earthquake
Making a statement on the figures of the Van earthquake as of 17.00 o’clock, Prime Ministry General Directorate of Natural Disasters (AFAD) announced that 366 people lost their lives and 1300 were injured while two thousand 262 buildings were demolished as a result of the 7.2 magnitude earthquake, according to initial reports.
BDP Co-Chair Selahattin Demirta? remarked that the government hadn’t reached Van for 24 hours and called on the government to take immediate steps to help the citizens in the region.
Demirta? noted that the situation of student dormitories were quite bad and underlined that the people in the villages they examined had a serious shortage of living material. Demirta? said; “In the villages we examined, we saw how abandoned people are since the government still hasn’t reached many villages. Natural disasters should never be involved with politics. Everyone should act with solidarity with the people in Erci?. We call everyone to show awareness and to support the people of Van.”
One other statement was made from the Crisis Desk by Van Mayor Bekir Kaya who expressed that the figures concerning casualties weren’t clear and did not reflect the truth. Remarking that the Governor’s Office refused their demand to make a joint work, Kaya indicated that people were still on streets, waiting for tents, food and drink water.
Kaya said that Van was caught unprepared in the earthquake and expressed that they had observed a terrible scene in the villages they observed and marked that the aids still hadn’t reached the area where people had to stay outside in winter conditions although one day had passed over the earthquake. Kaya called all sensitive circles and employers in particular for affording support to the region.
Examining the villages damaged by the earthquake with a delegation consisting of BDP deputies and mayors for Diyarbak?r, Van, A?r? and Siirt, BDP Co-Chair Gültan K??anak remarked that rescue works were insufficient.
While deputies and mayors met with victims to give support, Diyarbak?r mobilized to afford assistance for the earthquake region, particularly Erci? district and villages that weren’t reached by the government. Search and rescue teams, technical teams, rescue vehicles, buses were sent from Diyarbak?r to the region where BDP also offered a Health Tent and Kitchen Tent services to meet the health and food requirement of citizens.
Answering journalist questions here, BDP Co-Chair Gültan K??anak remarked that the earthquake caused a great number of deaths and injuries. “Once again it came in view that we are at the zero point in earthquake rescue works”, said K??anak and gave examples from Erci? where search and rescue teams started to work only at several points at 22.00 at night.
K??anak said the followings; “Rescue works were both inadequate and uncoordinated and not leaded by professional persons who were noncompetent in saving lives. There wasn’t any serious preparation and there were problems with the coordination regarding the needs of the saved people. Despite long discussions since the 17 August earthquake in 1999, it came out that the government hasn’t taken any measures and precautions in this regard as well as being caught unprepared. It seems that the people will relieve their wound themselves.”
K??anak made a call for strengthening and expanding the campaigns run by BDP municipalities and NGOs and demanded support from the people.

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