African leaders have sent messages of commiseration to Türkiye and Syria following deadly earthquakes on Monday.
A magnitude 7.7 earthquake struck Türkiye’s southern province of Kahramanmaras at 4:17 a.m. local time (0117 GMT), followed by several aftershocks. A second major quake with a magnitude of 7.6 struck the same area again at 1:24 p.m. local time (1024 GMT).
The powerful earthquakes have killed over 5,000 people across a swathe of Türkiye and northwestern Syria so far.
The World Health Organization has warned that the death toll may rise dramatically as rescuers find more victims.
As the world comes together in support, African leaders have also expressed their condolences and sent messages of solidarity with the two countries.
“The president wishes those injured a speedy recovery and assures that the prayers and thoughts of Nigerians are with the many affected by this severe disaster and its aftershocks,” Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said in a statement.
As a steadfast friend to Turkey and Syria, President Buhari says Nigeria is ready to offer its full support in any way possible,” it added.
Other presidents also sent their messages on social media.
Heartbreaking news from Türkiye and Syria following the earthquake. On behalf of the Government and the people of Tanzania, I extend my heartfelt condolences to all those affected by this tragedy. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.
— Samia Suluhu (@SuluhuSamia) February 6, 2023
My deepest condolences to President @RTErdogan, the people of Türkiye and of Syria for the immense loss of life and destruction following the earthquake. The people of Rwanda stand in solidarity with you during this time of sorrow.
— Paul Kagame (@PaulKagame) February 6, 2023
Our hearts go out to the people of Türkiye and Syria following the loss of life caused by the earthquake. We mourn with families who have lost loved ones and wish all those injured a quick recovery.
— William Samoei Ruto, PhD (@WilliamsRuto) February 7, 2023
On behalf of the Government and people of Ghana, I extend heartfelt condolences to the Governments and peoples of Turkey and Syria on the devastation and the tragic loss of lives occasioned by Monday’s earthquake. 1/2
— Nana Akufo-Addo (@NAkufoAddo) February 6, 2023
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has since announced a three-month state of emergency across 10 provinces worst affected by the earthquake.