Spot Report: Humanitarian Catastrophe in Southern Turkey and Northern Syria by Navanti’s Jason Wang

The Levant region was recently impacted by a devastating earthquake with numerous powerful aftershocks, with southern Turkey and northern Syria reporting over 34,000 deaths as of 14 February 2023.

This devastation quickly activated response networks throughout the world, prompting local, regional, and international calls for support; rapid deployments of Search and Rescue (SAR) teams, infrastructure assistance, and emergency funding were provided by international organizations, including the European Union (EU), North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the United Nations (UN), The International Committee of the Red Cross, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), and the World Bank.

Individual nation’s efforts are also ongoing: SAR teams, medical supplies, field hospitals, and humanitarian aid have been deployed by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the UK Fire and Rescue Services, Italy’s Civil Protection Agency, International Search and Rescue Germany, the Japanese Coast Guard, and many, many others. While some efforts have been hampered by local unrest, progress is being made as rescuers provide overlapping support through agile, flexible, and cohesive teamwork.

Ongoing rescue efforts have mobilized international support in the form of awareness, donations, and calls-to-action; this tragedy may bring forth various forms of disaster diplomacy, which may be practical paths towards regional and global unity. With rival tensions ongoing from the Russian invasion and accelerating throughout the Indo-Pacific, strong leadership and cohesive humanitarian support may be a path to gradual diffusion; population movement, environmental threats, and supply risks are all topics that emerging partnerships will need to consider in the upcoming years.

At the Navanti Group, our thoughts are with those affected by this tragedy, and we urge everyone to do what they can to support the ongoing rescue and relief efforts.

List of aid agencies operating in the area:

CAF America Turkiye and Syria Fund

Time’s Magazine updated list