36 C
Monday, June 5, 2023

From devastation to recovery: Turkish mum-of-two and family arrive in UAE recovering from earthquake trauma – News

Rescuers had to go through walls to free former Abu Dhabi resident and children from their third-floor apartment

read more…

published: Wednesday, March 8, 2023 at 5:10 pm

Last updated: Wednesday, March 8, 2023 at 5:27 pm

Former Abu Dhabi resident Afra’s two young children are now not allowing her to close their bedroom door because they fear it will never open. The trio were among hundreds of thousands of people killed in the devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria last month, killing more than 50,000 and causing damage worth millions of dirhams.

The children are still traumatized by rescuers having to walk through walls to reach them.

Residents of Antakya, Turkey, Afra, her 6-year-old son Ali and 3-year-old daughter Rayan were trapped for more than an hour before neighbors came to rescue them.

Now recuperating with her parents and sisters in Abu Dhabi, Afra still remembers the moment she woke up terrified. “It was around 4:30 in the morning,” she said.

“My kids were sleeping next to me. Suddenly, the building started shaking violently and I felt something fall on top of me. I just wanted to protect the kids.”

Afra is located on the third floor of a 5-storey building. The ground floor swimming pool was the first structure to break, causing the entire building to become unbalanced.

At the time, Aphra’s first priority was keeping her baby safe. “I started screaming loudly,” she recalls. Her husband, Jamil, was away because he was working in a small town near Idlib, Syria, an eight-hour drive from where they live. Luckily for Aphra, some neighbors heard her screams and came to her rescue.

However, their doors are locked and refuse to budge. In the end, rescuers used tools to break through the wall to find them. “When they came in, I asked them to save my baby first,” she said. They cleared the rubble, took the kids out, and came back to pick her up. There has been multiple vandalism throughout the neighborhood.

two days in the car

After being rescued, Afra was in great pain. “I don’t know what happened, but my whole body was in pain,” she said. “I thought it was furniture falling on me and it will be fine in a few days.”

By then, her panicked husband had returned to be with them. The next two days, the family spent in the car. At this point, Afra managed to get into her house to get some essentials, but the house was badly damaged.

By the second day of the earthquake, she could no longer bear the pain. “I knew something was wrong,” she said. “I need to go to the hospital.”

Jamil drove the family to Istanbul, a grueling 19-hour drive. They arrived there on February 10 and Aphra was rushed to hospital where a quick scan revealed five broken ribs and a punctured lung that caused internal bleeding. “I was told that surgery had to be done immediately,” she said. “But I’m thankful that my children are safe and sound.”

After the operation, Afra spent five days in the hospital. Mentally and physically scarred, the family decided to travel to Abu Dhabi to join Afra’s family in recuperating.

as a result of

According to Afra’s sister Ola, the family brought her and the children here for a comprehensive checkup, and they seemed to be recovering well. But she admits it will take them a while to recover from the shock.

“Most of Afra’s neighbors and friends were killed in the earthquake,” she said. “Some days are tough for her but she really doesn’t like to talk about it. We are so thankful to Allah that she and the children are safe and they are with us. We are doing everything we can to make them feel comfortable here .”

According to Ola’s estimates, it could take several months for Antakya to regain its footing. “Everything is closed and restoration work is underway,” she said.

“But I think it will take at least 3-6 months for schools and businesses to reopen. Several people are still missing and bodies are yet to be recovered.”

Source link

Related Articles

The Ministry of Finance held a symposium on public finance policy and the labor market

The Ministry of Finance (MoF) organized an interactive seminar on financial policy and the labor market in Dubai on the theme "Promoting Economic...

Corporate Tax in UAE Free Zones – Clarification of qualifying income and material requirements for eligible free zone persons

introduce On 1 June 2023, the provisions of Federal Decree No. 47 of 2022 - Taxation of Companies and Businesses (also known as the...

UAE President receives written message from Cyprus President on bilateral relations

Abu Dhabi , 5th June (ANI/WAM): His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, has received a written...

Latest Articles