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Turkey Earthquake 2011: 217 Dead After Powerful Earthquake (PHOTOS)

It has been confirmed that at least 217 people were killed and 1,090 injured by the 7.2 magnitude earthquake on Sunday in eastern Turkey.

According to interior minister Idris Naim Sahin, 100 people died in Van city and 117 in the Ercis district of Van province while 1,090 were injured, AFP has reported.

The quake was initially measured at 7.3 magnitude but later it was downgraded to 7.2 by the U.S. Geological Survey.

The earthquake struck around 10:40 a.m. local time.

Turky Earthquake 10/23/2011
Rescue workers try to save people trapped under debris after an earthquake in Tabanli village near the eastern Turkish city of Van on Oct. 23, 2011. |

Survivors and emergency service workers searched continuously through debris and smashed concrete.

In Ercis, rescuers tried to free one young boy trapped under a concrete slab. “Be patient, be patient,” they urged him, according to Reuters.

A man weeps as rescue workers try to save his son, trapped under debris from the earthquake that rocked eastern Turkey, on Oct. 23, 2011. |

The rescue workers and victims struggled as temperatures dropped and medical supplies became stretched.

Victims of the earthquake gather for warmth in Ercis. Tents, food and water, and medical supplies are still desperately needed in the worst areas, as many find themselves homeless amid below-freezing temperatures. |

It is believed that as many as 80 buildings have fallen in Ercis alone and that a dormitory and 10 buildings in Van have also collapsed, according to reports.

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