CHP Delegation finds continued neglect of earthquake victims in Hatay
A delegation from Turkey's main opposition CHP party that visited the earthquake-ravaged province of Hatay said victims continue to face inadequate shelter, food, health services, and security six months after the devastating tremors.
CHP leader Aylin Nazliaka said Hatay residents feel the government is treating them like "stepchildren" and leaving them to fend for themselves. She cited severe health problems in the tent camps because of poor hygiene. As economic issues mount, victims are struggling to meet basic needs.
Thousands of unidentified bodies pulled from the rubble raise urgent questions. Nazliaka said, asking, "Where are the missing citizens?" She vowed that the party would continue to press the issue.
The delegation also highlighted the safety risks for women and children in the camps. Nazlıaka warned of cases of harassment and abuse and urged the authorities to take protective measures.
They raised alarms about the risk of asbestos from the haphazard rubble removal. Witnesses report a spike in respiratory diseases in the dusty city. The economic toll is also heavy, with merchants going out of business.
In Samandag, the CHP delegation accused the government of obstructing relief projects proposed by the municipality. Schools damaged in the earthquakes remain unrepaired a month before classes are due to start.
Muzeyyen Sevkin, a member of parliament, described Hatay as a "graveyard city" with minimal rubble removal, creating significant health hazards. Lung diseases have risen to extreme levels, she said. Older residents often go hungry, with aid groups now the only food source.
The lack of functioning health facilities and staff shortages, exacerbated by the quakes, are also severely hampering care, Sevkin stressed.
The CHP called for an urgent parliamentary session to address the ongoing humanitarian crisis. The party vowed to continue raising the plight of the neglected quake victims.