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Victims of August 17 commemorated

Commemoration ceremonies were held early on Saturday at 03:02 in Izmit, Yalova, Sakarya and other Turkish cities for those who died at the Marmara earthquake in August 17, 1999

Mo_Ibrahim_3_280_420_80_s(AA) – Commemoration ceremonies were held early on Saturday at  03:02 in Izmit, Yalova, Sakarya and other Turkish cities for those who died at the Marmara earthquake in August 17, 1999.

With the attendance of Turkish Parliament members, Izmit district mayors, officials and NGOs, a group of 150 Izmit residents marched along the main street at the city center of Izmit, one of the few cities where the 7.4 magnitude earthquake caused the most destruction, holding placards that said “We neither forget, nor will let it be forgotten.”

Expressing his condolences to those who lost their loved ones at the 1999 earthquake, Head of AFAD Earthquake Department Dr. Murat Onurlu reiterated the fact that Turkey is a country of earthquakes, which all must acknowledge.

Onurlu reminded of the situation of Turkey back in 1999 in terms of preparations for possible earthquakes and the conscious of earthquake among Turkish people.

“After the August 17 earthquake occurred, we were left without transportation facilities, communication and energy supply. But we have made a long way since then. When we experienced Van earthquake in 2011, we managed to built new permanent housings within one year and delivered their keys to those who lost their homes due to the earthquake,” he said.

He stated that Turkey now has 600 earthquake observation stations while the figure was only 45 back in 1999.

“Turkey is a country of earthquakes. We experienced 28,740 eartquakes in total in 2012 of magnitudes of 2 or above. We have prepared a National Strategy and Road Map on Earthquakes, including the specified measures to decrease the harms of earthquakes. Turkish General Directorate of Mineral Research and Exploration (MTA) also revised the fault line map of Turkey,” he added.

At the 14th anniversary of August 17 Marmara earthquake, search engine of Google also commemorates those losing their lives at Marmara earthquake in August 17, 1999 by using a black ribbon under its logo on the main search page.

Users of the search engine meet a message when they drag the cursor on the black ribbon, saying “We remember with respect who died in 1999 Izmit earthquake.”

englishnews@aa.com.tr

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