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Turkey-Syria Quake: Death Tolls Tops 21,000 As Rescuers Race To Find Survivors

Rescuers scoured debris in a desperate search for survivors on Friday four days after a massive earthquake hit Turkey and Syria, killing nearly 22,000 people, as the United States offered an $85-million aid package.

The first UN aid deliveries arrived on Thursday in Syrian rebel-held zones, but chances of finding survivors have dimmed since the passing of the three-day mark that experts consider a critical period to save lives.

The US Agency for International Development said its aid package will go to partners on the ground β€œto deliver urgently needed aid for millions of people”, including through food, shelter and emergency health services.

It will also support safe drinking water and sanitation to prevent the outbreak of disease, USAID said in a statement.

Bitter cold hampered search efforts in both countries, but more than 80 hours after the disaster struck, 16-year-old Melda Adtas was found alive in the southern Turkish city of Antakya.

Her overjoyed father was in tears and the grieving nation cheered an agonisingly rare piece of good news

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