AL-MUKALLA: The number of Yemenis killed in Monday’s earthquake in Turkey has risen to seven after rescuers recovered the remains of five Yemenis on Friday amid escalating frustration over the sluggish delivery of humanitarian aid.
A statement from the Yemeni embassy in Ankara on Saturday morning said that a Yemeni engineer named Burhan Al-Alimi was killed in the earthquake in the city of Malatya in the Eastern Anatolia area and that the bodies of Yemeni doctor Mohammed Al-Ara’awi’s wife, her sister and their two children were recovered from wreckage in Hatay city, southern Turkiye.
Al-Ara’awi himself survived because he was in another Turkish city at the time.
On Wednesday, the bodies of Yemeni doctor, Hamedi Al-Ghazali, and his wife were recovered in Malatya.
The Yemeni ambassador to Turkiye met with the Yemeni community to discuss the coordination of relief efforts for Yemenis in earthquake-stricken regions. Scores of Yemeni students and their families have been relocated.
Speaking to Al-Arabiya TV outside the crumbling apartment block where his family lived, Al-Ara’awi — speaking before their bodies had been found — said he had seen the body of his 16-year-old son Amen, who had been struck by a concrete pillar. The rest of his family was buried under the rubble.
“This is really painful. I entrust my affairs to Allah. If they are still alive, I want them. And if they are deceased, I will bury their remains,” Al- Ara’awi said, adding that he had been unaware the earthquake was happening. “I contacted my family and received no response. I contacted my Turkish neighbor but received no response. My Yemeni friend from another region informed me of the catastrophe.”
The Yemeni Students Union in Turkiye has issued an urgent plea to the Yemeni government and aid agencies, requesting that they provide money, clothes, and shelter to earthquake-affected Yemeni students and their families.
“There is a student who lost everything in the earthquake, including clothing,” Mohammed Amer, head of the Yemeni Students Union, told Arab News.
“Despite our thanks for the Yemeni ambassador’s follow-ups, we urge stronger engagement from the Yemeni government, since these people have lost everything and need new housing, and at least one month’s rent, food, clothes, and money,” he continued.
Meanwhile, the president of Yemen’s Leadership Council, Rashad Al-Alimi, departed the southern city of Aden for Riyadh on Saturday, embarking on a tour of the European Union in an attempt to garner support for his government, discuss peace efforts, and address the country’s worsening humanitarian crisis.
The official news agency SABA said the Yemeni leader will visit Belgium before traveling to Germany to attend the Munich Security Conference.
The Yemeni leader last visited Germany in September, when he met with top officials to discuss the expansion of Germany’s humanitarian activities in Yemen.