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Miraculous moments as survivors pulled from earthquake rubble in Turkey, Syria


(NEW YORK) — Rescue efforts are ongoing after a massive earthquake and powerful aftershocks caused widespread devastation across southeastern Turkey and northern Syria.

Tens of thousands of people have been killed, and the death toll continues to mount as first responders carefully comb through the wreckage looking for survivors. In hard-hit Turkey, over 6,000 buildings have been damaged or destroyed, officials said.

Rescuers have been working feverishly in cold, wet weather while also facing the threat of aftershocks since the 7.8 magnitude earthquake rocked the region early Monday.

Amid the tragedy and horror of the natural disaster have been reports of miraculous and dramatic rescues.

Among the survivors, an entire family was rescued in the Idlib province in western Syria on Tuesday, according to the humanitarian organization Syria Civil Defense.

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Footage of the rescue showed two girls and a boy pulled from the wreckage of a building by the group’s volunteer White Helmets to loud, jubilant cheers from the large crowd gathered. The children were brought to an ambulance. Two adults also appeared to be carried out from the collapsed building on stretchers.

One of the survivors is a 4-year-old girl named Beyz, who is in good health, the Antalya Municipality Search and Rescue Team told ABC News.

Survivors have been found after being trapped for several days and rescued after hours of effort.

In Salqin, Syria, a girl named Aisha was pulled from the rubble Tuesday night after being buried for 40 hours, according to rescuers. Cheers erupted as the White Helmets carried the child away from the debris.

In Turkey, siblings Hilal, 12, and Sukru, 8, were pulled from the rubble in Hatay 80 hours after the earthquake, local officials said on Thursday.

In the Turkish town of Kahramanmaraş, a mother and her 6-year-old daughter were rescued from the rubble of a collapsed house early Thursday, according to a German response team involved in the nearly 20-hour rescue. Responders created a tunnel through the rubble using heavy equipment and manual labor to reach them.

ABC News reporters on the ground in the Turkish city of Diyarbakir on Tuesday learned that crews had recently rescued a woman from what used to be an eight-story apartment building; the top half now rests on three flattened floors below.

A young Syrian refugee named Muhammed was pulled from the wreckage Tuesday evening in Antakya, Turkey, after being stuck for nearly 45 hours, according to local officials. A first responder was captured giving the child water from a bottle cap as rescuers worked to free him.

Animals have also been among those saved in the wake of the devastating earthquake. In Iskenderun, Turkey, rescuers found a small dog, Pamuk, buried up to its neck in the ruins of a building. They offered him water from their hands as they worked to pull him free, more than 72 hours after the earthquake. The dog reportedly is being cared for by neighbors while his owner is hospitalized.

ABC News’ Victoria Beaule and Will Gretsky contributed to this report.

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