Rescue workers have intensified the search for Ghanaian footballer Christian Atsu, Nigerian winger David Akintola (Adana Demirspor) among the thousands trapped under rubble after an earthquake hit Turkey.
A massive earthquake, considered to be one of the strongest to hit the region in the past century, struck Turkey and Syria early on Monday, leaving a trail of destruction and death.
More than 4,300 people have been confirmed dead, with rescuers frantically searching for survivors trapped beneath the rubble.
The earthquake, which sent tremors as far as Lebanon and Israel, struck at around 4 a.m. local time, jolting residents from their sleep.
In Turkey, the disaster has claimed the lives of 2,921 people and injured over 15,800, according to the country’s head of disaster services, Yunus Sezer. In neighboring Syria, the death toll has reached 1,451.
The devastating earthquake has left a path of destruction and heartbreak in its wake, and rescue efforts are ongoing as authorities work to reach those still trapped in the rubble.
The country’s football league is host to a number of African players and at least one of them – Christian Atsu of Ghana – is feared trapped. Atsu had scored the winning goal for Hayatspor in their match only a few hours earlier on Sunday.
BBC Africa Sport’s Oluwashina Okeleji says Henry Onyekuru of Adana Demirspor and the Nigeria national team is safe.
However, Maher Mezahi, says at least two other African footballers David Akintola (Adana Demirspor), Emmanuel James (Gazientep), are not yet accounted for.
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