Turkey and Syria earthquakes devastated castles and citadels.
In Turkey and Syria, earthquakes have caused damage to a number of important historical structures, including castles and citadels. © Images AGN

Some of the most important historical sites in the area, like a castle in Gaziantep and a citadel in Aleppo, are in danger, too. On Tuesday, rescuers were desperately looking for survivors after the devastating earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.

Turkey and Syria earthquakes devastated castles and citadels.

In a statement, UNESCO, which is the cultural arm of the UN, said it was doing a survey of the affected areas and had found that many buildings had been damaged or had fallen down completely.

“I’m sorry for the people who died and their families and friends. I’m also thinking about the hurt and everyone else affected. Within the scope of its mission, our organisation will help, “The statement was made by Audrey Azoulay, who is the head of UNESCO.

But the agency is also worried about the valuable history of the area.

Aleppo, Syria, an old city where towers and walls have lived through both ancient and modern wars, has been hurt badly. The famous Citadel, which is a World Heritage Site, was damaged. It had just been fixed after the battle for Aleppo in 2012, which was part of Syria’s long-running and still-ongoing civil war.

After a powerful earthquake killed more than 1,600 people across the war-torn country, the Syrian Red Crescent asked Western countries to end their sanctions and send help.
A Picture of the Syria-Turkey Earthquake.

Most of what was left of the Citadel was built in the 12th and 13th centuries A.D. by the Ayyubid dynasty, which was started by Saladin, who was famous for his battles with the Christian Crusaders. It also has signs of the Greek, Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman empires.

The agency said that the western tower of the old city wall fell down and that several buildings in the souks, which are old markets, were damaged.

In Turkey, UNESCO said that several buildings had fallen down in Diyarbakr, a city in the southeast with a large Kurdish population. This made people worry about the Diyarbakr Fortress and the Hevsel Gardens Cultural Landscape, both of which are World Heritage Sites.

The fortress is very important to the history of the Upper Tigris River Basin because it was used during Greek, Roman, Islamic, and Ottoman rule. Its city walls, which are 3.6 miles long, are still a big draw for tourists. Only the Great Wall of China is thought to be bigger.

The agency was also worried about the mysterious stone structures at Gobekli Tepe in the Anatolian mountains, which were built between 9600 and 8200 B.C.; Nemrut Da, a temple-tomb in southeastern Turkey that King Antiochus built as a tribute to himself in the first century B.C.; and the 30-meter-tall Arslantepe Mound near the eastern city of Malatya, which was inhabited from the 6th millennium B.

“UNESCO is getting its experts together to make a detailed list of the damage so that these sites can be quickly made safe and stable,” the agency said.

The impressive castle in the centre of the city of Gaziantep in southeastern Turkey was one of the first major buildings to show signs of damage. It wasn’t far from the epicentre of Monday’s first big earthquake, which caused a lot of damage.

The castle has been left in part in ruins. It is built on a site that dates back to the Hittite Empire.

The state-run news agency Anadolu said that the bastions, which are the protruding parts of a castle wall, had been “destroyed” on the east, south, and southeast sides, with the rubble ending up on the road.

In the 2nd and 3rd centuries A.D., the Romans built and added to the castle. In the sixth century, the walls and 12 towers that surround the inner keep were built by the Byzantine Empire.

The historical Gaziantep Castle in Turkey sustained damage in the 7.4 magnitude earthquake.

The amazingly well-kept castle was a popular place for tourists, and it was also home to the Gaziantep Defense and Heroism Panoramic Museum. This museum told the story of how the site was important in the Turkish war of independence after World War I.

When an old network of underground tunnels was found in 2020, the most recent renovation work began. Plans were being made to let tourists into the tunnels this year.

The earthquakes have done a lot of damage to Turkey’s beautiful Islamic architecture, including to a mosque that has been hit by earthquakes before.

The tremors on Monday caused the Yeni Camii, or New Mosque, in Malatya to fall apart. Its big domes are now in ruins.

After being damaged by an earthquake in 2020, the mosque had just fixed itself up and started being used again. The mosque stands where the Hac Yusuf Mosque used to be. In 1893, an earthquake destroyed the Hac Yusuf Mosque.

This story was first posted on NBCNews.com.

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