Turkish officials held the second meeting of the country’s national “risk shield” model on Friday, a week after the plan to build new disaster-resistant homes in the country’s quake-hit south was announced.
The meeting took place in Gaziantep, one of the 11 provinces hit worst by powerful back-to-back earthquakes last month, at the local directorate of the country’s disaster management agency AFAD, with Environment, Urbanization, and Climate Change Minister Murat Kurum at the helm.
Speaking after the meeting, Kurum said that as part of the model, experts, scientists, and academics are conducting research on post-disaster management, the construction of resilient cities with policies to be adopted in the rebuilding process, and disaster risk management.
Working groups that include experts and bureaucrats from various fields were formed in the second meeting.
“We will protect the nature and environment of cities with an understanding that will protect their history, culture, and demographic structures here. We will make it resistant to climate change, and we will do our work with an understanding that can make it resistant to disasters,” said Kurum.
“We will act by preserving the unique structure, unique identity, architecture, and values of each city,” he added.
Meanwhile, a proposal for the formation of a disaster reconstruction fund was adopted by the parliament’s Planning and Budget Committee on Thursday.
More than 47,000 people were killed in Türkiye by earthquakes that struck on Feb. 6, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday.
The magnitude 7.7 and 7.6 quakes, centered in Kahramanmaras, rocked 11 provinces, including Adana, Adiyaman, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hatay, Kilis, Malatya, Osmaniye, Elazig, and Sanliurfa.
Around 14 million people in Türkiye have been affected, as well as many others in northwestern Syria.