Published: Mon, February 11, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Death toll rises to 16 In Istanbul building collapse

Death toll rises to 16 In Istanbul building collapse

The collapse took place at around 4pm on the Asian side of Istanbul in the mostly residential Kartal district.

"So far 14 of our fellow citizens have been lost and another 14 people have been brought out of the rubble alive", Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu told a news conference.

After the prosecutor's office said it was looking into the cause of the incident, Turkish television stations immediately ended their live broadcasts from the scene.

Erdogan also visited a hospital where more than a dozen people are being treated.

Experts say a majority of buildings in Istanbul lack proper licenses and are built illegally or without engineering services.

The collapse fanned criticism of a government amnesty granted previous year to people accused of illegal building - a measure announced ahead of municipal elections this March.

Turkish cities have grown massively under Erdogan's 15 years in power.

Rescuers continue to comb through the wreckage of the building in an eastern suburb of Istanbul, Turkey's biggest city, more than two days after it fell down.

On Saturday, 9 members of Alemdar family - who all died during the collapse of the building - were buried today in a cemetery in Pendik district. Five other relatives, including two children, are among the 13 people hospitalized in the collapse.

Fourteen out of 35 people were rescued from the debris, he added.

Rescue teams were last night still searching the rubble of an apartment block in Istanbul after a local official warned that there could have been as many as 30 people inside when it collapsed on Wednesday. The collapsed building had 14 apartments, 43 registered residents and three businesses.

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