MOSCOW, February 7. /TASS/. Russian archaeologists are ready to help Turkish and Syrian colleagues in restoring ancient historical sites destroyed by the powerful earthquake, Vladimir Sedov, a corresponding member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, member of the Russian Historical Society and Chief Researcher at the Department of Medieval Archaeology of Institute of archaeology of the RAS, told TASS on Tuesday.
"Very valuable historical sites have been seriously damaged by the earthquake. Russia has very good restorers and archaeologists, there is an understanding of what we are capable of in terms of archaeology and restoration. And so, if there is request for help from Turkish and Syrian colleagues, with whom we have good relations, surely, we will be ready to help restore what has been lost," he said.
The natural disaster has damaged important historical sites. According to the Syrian Department of Museums and Sites, cracks have appeared in the walls of UNESCO World Heritage Citadel of Aleppo. In Turkey, the fortress in the city of Gaziantep, a site of the country’s national cultural heritage, first mentioned in the II-III centuries, has been destroyed. Local media report that the walls and towers of the fortress have collapsed.
A magnitude 7.7 earthquake hit Kahramanmaras province in southeast Turkey on Monday. Earth tremors were felt in 10 provinces in the country, as well as in neighbouring states including Syria, where major damage was also recorded. A short time later, a new powerful earthquake struck. Recent figures indicate that more than 3,400 people have been killed and more than 20,000 have been injured in Turkey. Over 800 people have been killed in Syria.