A 5.2-magnitude earthquake hit eastern Turkey Tuesday – the third major earthquake in two weeks – prompting protests from residents who are unsatisfied with relief efforts.
The earthquake hit the town of Van, killing at least 10 people and injuring hundreds more. Rescue teams picked through rubble throughout the night. At least 27 people were saved.
More than 600 people died following an Oct. 23 earthquake. Two thousand buildings and homes were torn apart in the quake, sending victims to relief centers. The centers, some victims allege, are not treating the displaced victims fairly.
"Our people are freezing. We are sleeping outside – all seven of my family," 32-year-old Abdulrahim Kaplan told the Christian Science Monitor. "Some people take five tents, some 10 and others get nothing. This is wrong."
Police used tear gas on some of the 200 protestors that congregated near a crumbled luxury hotel in the city center. The protest called for the resignation of the provincial governor.
Turkey is in the midst of an unusually cold November, with temperatures dipping as low as 5 degrees. There are reports of victims, particularly children and elders, succumbing to frostbite.
Many victims were already living in tents before Tuesday morning’s earthquake. They had feared that another earthquake would destroy their homes, perhaps with their families inside.
"We're afraid to go back into our homes," Sefa Yildizbasi, a government worker in Van, told CNN. "They call them aftershocks but it's not like that. It's like a nuclear bomb went off underneath us."
Now, many victims aren’t returning to their homes because they fear there will be nothing left. The camps at least provide the opportunity for tents and food – whether those supplies are allocated fairly is the source of the victims’ discontent.
And many more are just leaving the region. Van is a ghost town after Tuesday’s earthquake, according to locals.
A blizzard is expected to hit Van on Friday.