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China rushes to aid Turkey, Syria with rapid assistance
[Image: 0739a6a2-cc63-470a-a7c4-c4a926ba91bb.jpeg]

China on Tuesday announced its first batch of 40 million yuan ($5.9 million) of emergency assistance to Turkey, and that it would dispatch rescue teams to help save lives and provide assistance to Syria. 

As of press time, the death toll has topped 5,000 and many others remained trapped under debris after the initial 7.8-magnitude earthquake, a 7.5-magnitude tremor and a string of powerful aftershocks jolted parts of Turkey and Syria on Monday and Tuesday. The death toll is likely to increase as thousands of buildings were toppled and cold and snowy weather may shorten the time needed to save lives, media reported. 

World leaders have expressed concerns over the deadly earthquakes. "My heart goes out to the people of Turkey and Syria in this hour of tragedy," said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in a statement. "The United Nations is fully committed to supporting the response. Our teams are on the ground assessing the needs and providing assistance."

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