Relatives of potential victims wait as rescuers search for survivors 
after a powerful earthquake struck Turkey and parts of Greece.
Relatives of potential victims wait as rescuers search for survivors after a powerful earthquake struck Turkey and parts of Greece.
PIC: AFP

Rescue teams on Saturday plowed through concrete blocks and the debris of eight collapsed buildings in search of survivors of a powerful earthquake that struck Turkey's Aegean coast and north of the Greek island of Samos, killing at least 27 people.

More than 800 others were injured.

The quake hit Friday afternoon, toppling buildings in Izmir, Turkey's third largest city, and triggering a small tsunami in the district of Seferihisar and on Samos. The quake was followed by hundreds of aftershocks.

Early on Saturday, onlookers cheered as rescuers lifted teenager Inci Okan out of the rubble of a devastated eight-floor apartment block in Izmir's Bayrakli district. Her dog, Fistik, was also rescued, Sozcu newspaper reported. Friends and relatives waited outside the building for news of loved ones still trapped inside, including employees of a dentist's surgery that was located on the ground floor.

In another collapsed building, rescuers made contact with a 38-year-old woman and her four children - aged 3, 7 and 10-year old twins - and were working to clear a corridor to bring them out, state-run Anadolu Agency reported.

Two other women, aged 53 and 35, were brought out from the rubble of another toppled two-story building earlier on Saturday.

In all, around 100 people have been rescued since the earthquake, Murat Kurum, the environment and urban planning minister, told reporters.

Some 5,000 rescue personnel were working on the ground, Kurum said.

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