Love Island’s Ekin-Su Culculoglu Reveals His Turkish Family Is ‘Sleeping Outside’ After Earthquake
Ekin-Su Culculoglu has revealed that some members of her family have been forced to sleep in the open after a devastating earthquake struck parts of Turkey and Syria.
The 28-year-old Love Island winner, of Turkish origin and who lived in Istanbul for two years, said some of her loved ones were caught up in the disaster on Monday.
she appeared in sky news on Tuesday to talk about the earthquake, explaining that his family members have been forced to sleep outside after the disaster.
His comments come as officials and doctors said 9,057 people had been killed in Turkey and 2,662 in Syria by Monday’s magnitude 7.8 temblor, bringing the total to 11,719, making it the deadliest seismic event in more than a decade.
During her televised appearance from her Essex home, Ekin-Su admitted it has been a “scary” time for her as she has lent her support to relief efforts.
Shock: Ekin-Su Culculoglu has revealed that her family was forced to sleep in the open after a devastating earthquake struck parts of Turkey and Syria.
She said: ‘I have members of my family who have obviously experienced the tremor, they have been outside, they have been sleeping outside.
“It is scary because they are people very close to me. Numerous people on Instagram have contacted me, sent me one address locations, live photos. They are crying out for help.
“I want to use my platform as much as I can to help anyone from Syria and Turkey.”
Ekin-Su, who took part in a video appeal for the British Red Cross, said she has donated money to the rescue efforts and wants to go to Turkey at the “first opportunity” with the charity.
She said: ‘As soon as I get the opportunity, I’m there. It’s obviously my home, it’s my second language. Anything I can do, I’m there to support anyone. So at the first opportunity, I’ll be there.
‘Anyone in the UK or whoever was following me [on Instagram] from whatever i was doing before i just want to yell here again please help. We have children, families, friends who desperately need your help,’ he continued.
‘I cannot stress this more. It’s very sad, it’s really heartbreaking. We are one nation, we are in this together. I have no words, it is my hometown, it is my country.’
Ekin-Su was born in Islington, London to Turkish parents Sezer and Zekai and lived in Istanbul while starring in Turkish television shows, before returning to the UK. She also has a younger brother, Arda.
Horror: His comments come as authorities said 9,057 people had died in Turkey (pictured: Hatay city center) and 2,662 in Syria from Monday’s 7.8-magnitude temblor, raising the total to 11,719
Speaking of his first-hand experience living in the country, he admitted that he was “always afraid” of earthquakes during his two-year stint residing in Istanbul.
She said: “I always lived in fear when I lived in Istanbul, but the fact that this has affected many cities and affected a large area of Turkey and Syria is so devastating.”
The death toll from the Turkey-Syria quake rose to 11,719, with authorities saying 9,057 people had died in Turkey and 2,662 in Syria, making it the deadliest seismic event in more than a decade.
Is more than the magnitude 7.8 earthquake in Nepal in 2015 that killed more than 8,800 people.
Officials say the death toll could double if experts’ worst fears are realized, bringing the death toll closer to the magnitude 9 earthquake off the coast of Japan that killed nearly 20,000 in 2011.
Family: Ekin-Su was born in Islington, London to Turkish parents Sezer and Zekai and lived in Istanbul for two years. She also has a younger brother Arda (pictured with her mother)
Meanwhile, rescuers in Turkey and Syria continued their search for survivors trapped inside the ruins of their houses toppled by the devastating earthquake.
Against all odds, search teams were still pulling people out of the rubble Wednesday, more than 48 hours after the initial 7.8-magnitude quake. This included an entire Syrian family found alive after days trapped in freezing darkness.
Miraculous videos have surfaced showing the children found by rescue teams in the devastated region and pulled from the remains of buildings covered in dust, but alive. On Tuesday, a newborn baby was saved, still attached to his dead mother.
Rescuers also pulled a three-year-old boy, Arif Kaan, from under the rubble of a collapsed apartment building in Kahramanmaras, a town near the epicenter.
A few hours later, rescuers pulled 10-year-old Betul Edis from the rubble of her home in the town of Adiyaman. Amid applause from onlookers, her grandfather kissed her and spoke softly to her as they loaded her into an ambulance.
Efforts: Rescuers in Turkey and Syria continued their search for survivors trapped inside the ruins of their houses collapsed by the quake. Pictured: Collapsed buildings are seen in Antakya, southern Turkey.
However, many more are believed to be still alive beneath huge piles of twisted concrete and metal, and the WHO has warned that time is running out for the thousands of injured and those still feared trapped.
More than 90 percent of earthquake survivors are rescued within the first three days, said Ilan Kelman, professor of disasters and health at University College London.
“Typically, earthquakes don’t kill people, infrastructure collapse kills people,” said Kelman, who has published research on earthquake rescue responses.
The most pressing factor is getting medical attention for people crushed under collapsed buildings before “their bodies give out” or they bleed to death, he said.
Devastating: More than 90 per cent of earthquake survivors are rescued within the first three days, said Professor Ilan Kelman. Pictured: Collapsed buildings in Antakya, southern Turkey.
The weather is also a key factor, and “it’s completely against us” in Turkey and Syria, Kelman told the AFP news agency. The quake-affected regions have been experiencing sub-zero temperatures as well as rain and snow since Monday.
“Unfortunately, this means that hypothermia is possible, and unfortunately, people are probably dying because of the weather,” Kelman said.
Those who manage to survive the cold and their injuries still need food and water.
Without water, many people “will start to die after three, four, five days,” he said.
Hopes for more rescues are fading as time passes, with freezing temperatures and constant aftershocks complicating rescue efforts.
We are at the 55th hour. These are the hours when the rescue efforts are most intense and sensitive,” said Murat Kurum, Turkey’s Minister of Environment and Urbanization, at the headquarters of Turkey’s AFAD disaster agency.
Shocking scenes: A drone view of the town of Iskenderun, Hatay, southeastern Turkey, shows widespread devastation