PRIME Minister Rishi Sunak praised Sun readers as our Earthquake Appeal total soared past £1MILLION.
It will help the Red Cross’s life-saving work in quake-hit Turkey and Syria — where rescuers are continuing to find survivors.
GettyRishi Sunak praised Sun readers as our Earthquake Appeal total soared past £1MILLION – pictured a new born baby rescued from under the rubble[/caption]
GettyIt came just six days after disaster hit Turkey and Syria — a miracle tot’s ordeal ends after 150 hours[/caption]
GettyThe PM said ‘The Sun’s campaign has raised an incredible £1million for the Red Cross’ life-saving work on the ground’[/caption]
The PM, said: “Sun readers have responded by doing what British people do best — reaching out to help those in need.”
Sun readers were hailed the best of British by Rishi Sunak.
The PM heaped praise on everyone who has donated cash to help victims of the catastrophe that has left more than 33,000 people dead.
Mr Sunak said: “The scale of the devastation in Turkey and Syria after last week’s massive earthquake is hard to comprehend.
“As a dad I find it absolutely heartbreaking to see parents desperately searching for their children in the rubble.”
To donate, visit redcross.org.uk/sunaid
“The Sun’s campaign has raised an incredible £1million for the Red Cross’ life-saving work on the ground, which will make a huge difference to people who have lost everything in the disaster.
“I’d urge anyone who can to support the Sun’s campaign and help to save lives.”
We hit the million-pound mark after a generous donation from pop mogul Simon Cowell, 63, along with pledges from big-hearted Sun readers which continued to pour in over the weekend.
Getty10-year-old girl rescued by search and rescue teams from under rubble of a collapsed building after 159 hours in Hatay, Turkey[/caption]
PAVital supplies put on Turkey-bound plane at RAF Brize Norton[/caption]
Retailer JD Sports also donated £25,000 to the fund — launched less than a week ago in the immediate aftermath of the 7.8 magnitude quake which hit 12 cities.
As British aid was loaded on to a plane at RAF Brize Norton, Mr Sunak added: “I’ve also spoken to Turkey’s President and promised the UK Government will stand with them.
“In the immediate aftermath of the earthquake, 77 British first responders and rescue dogs from fire services across the country flew out to join the search-and-rescue effort, and have been working day and night to pull people out from the wreckage.
“We have also provided additional funding to the White Helmets team working on the front line in Syria, and are flying out a full field hospital as well as thousands of blankets, tents and sanitation kits.
“For the millions of people injured and made homeless in the space of a few minutes last week, the road to recovery will be long. We will continue to do all we can to support.”
Last night Turkey’s disaster management authority said 29,605 people had died in their country and 3,574 in Syria, taking total fatalities to 33,179.
Officials and medics added that nearly 6,000 buildings — including hospitals — collapsed in seven Turkish cities.
More than 115 schools were also destroyed, according to the United Nations.
Andy Higginson, chairman of JD Sports: “The scale of human catastrophe is impossible to comprehend and I’m proud our staff have been able to raise this money quickly and for JD to play a small part in helping the Sun’s brilliant campaign.”
It followed donations last week by big brands including Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Iceland and Morrisons.
The Red Cross has been working on the ground in Turkey and Syria since day one to aid the search-and-rescue mission and provide vital humanitarian aid to survivors.
Staff and volunteers have been providing hot food, water and shelter to survivors left homeless in sub-zero temperatures.
Over the last week the Turkish Red Crescent disaster response team has set up mobile kitchens serving more than eight million hot meals and six million ready-to-eat packages. They have also distributed 30,000 blankets and more than 2,000 tents.
They have also established 300 blood donation points in the region and have specialists on the ground providing support for trauma.
GettySearch for bodies in flattened housing blocks in Hatay, Turkey[/caption]
A generous donation from pop mogul Simon Cowell, 63, helped us hit a millionRex
The Syrian Arab Red Crescent have distributed nearly 5,000 mattresses and more than 9,000 blankets and some 42,000 packages of food, water and hygiene kits.
The Red Cross also provide on-the-ground specialists supporting people suffering trauma.
Money is still needed to support vital humanitarian work.
Last night British Red Cross chief executive Mike Adamson said: “The full magnitude of this earthquake is still unfolding — and for the the survivors this is only the start.
“I want to thank Sun readers for their kindness and generosity. It is inspiring to see so many people give what they can, especially at a time when money is so tight.
“These donations will help Red Cross teams on the ground provide blankets, hot meals, tents and vital aid to all those who need it today and in the future.”
MORE than 130 construction bosses have been arrested in Turkey on suspicion of being responsible for buildings collapsing during the earthquake.
Officials will be checking whether strict codes governing building quality were flouted.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoan’s government has been blasted amid claims that earthquake engineering standards were rarely enforced.
Authorities in the province of Gaziantep also arrested two people suspected of cutting down supporting columns to make extra room in a building which collapsed.
Additional Reporting: Nick Parker
Scan this QR code to donate to The Sun Earthquake Appeal to help victimsMoney is still needed to support vital humanitarian work