ANKARA, Turkey - The death toll from Friday's powerful earthquake which struck in eastern Turkey keeps rising, the country's interior minister said on Saturday.
As at Saturday the number of people killed had risen to twenty-nine. There are more than 1,400 people injured in the quake, thirty-four of whom are in intensive care, so the toll is likely to rise further.
"Four people died in Malatya's Doganyol and 18 others in Elazig," Turkey's Minister for the Interior Suleyman Soylu told a news conference earlier on Saturday. He was joined at the conference by the health minister and environment and urbanization minister in Elazig province, where the quake occuured.
Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said an estimated 22 people were still trapped.
Forty-three people were also rescued from the rubble of collapsed houses and buildings, Soylu said.
He confirmed too a prison in Turkey's eastern Adiyaman province which was damaged as a result of the quake has been evacuated.
Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca told the press briefing that 128 injured people were receiving treatment in hospitals, and thirty-four of them were in intensive care units.
Environment and Urbanization Minister Murat Kurum issued a warning to local residents not to enter damaged houses as aftershocks are likely to continue in the region.
Kurum added that a 368-member emergency-response team was at the field to assess the damage caused by the earthquake.
The 6.8-magnitude quake hit eastern Elazig province at 8:55pm local time (1755 GMT) on Friday, with its epicenter in Sivrice district, along with neighboring provinces and countries including Syria and Georgia, Anadolu Agency said in a report.
(Photo credit: AFP).