Shropshire Star

Newborn baby rescued after mother gives birth while buried in quake debris

The girl was found under rubble with her umbilical cord still connected to her mother.


Residents in a northwest Syrian town discovered a crying baby whose mother appears to have given birth to her while buried underneath the rubble of a five-story apartment building.

The newborn girl was found buried under the debris with her umbilical cord still connected to her mother, Afraa Abu Hadiya, who was found dead, they said.

The baby was the only member of her family to survive from the building collapse on Monday in the small town of Jinderis, next to the Turkish border, Ramadan Sleiman, a relative, said.

The rescuers found the baby in the afternoon, more than 10 hours after the earthquake struck.

A female neighbour cut the cord, and she and others rushed with the baby to a children’s hospital in the nearby town of Afrin, where she has been kept in an incubator, said the physician treating her, Dr Hani Maarouf.

The baby’s body temperature had fallen and she had bruises, including a large one on her back, but she is in stable condition, he said.

A baby girl who was born under the rubble caused by an earthquake that hit Syria and Turkey receives treatment inside an incubator (Ghaith Alsayed/AP)

Dr Maarouf said he believed the baby had been born about three hours before being found, given how far her temperature had dropped.

Monday’s pre-dawn 7.8 magnitude earthquake, followed by multiple aftershocks, caused widespread destruction across southern Turkey and northern Syria.

The death toll has exceeded 5,000 and continues to rise with more bodies being discovered.

Jinderis, located in the rebel-held enclave of northwest Syria, was hard hit in the quake, with multiple buildings destroyed.

The town saw another dramatic rescue on Monday evening, when a toddler was pulled alive from the wreckage of a collapsed building.

Video from the White Helmets, the emergency service in the region, shows a rescuer digging through crushed concrete amid twisted metal until the little girl, named Nour, appeared.

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