The historical castle in Gaziantep collapses when a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck the country’s southeast, with the epicenter in the Pazarck district of Kahramanmaraş.
While the earthquake destroyed some bastions in the east, south, and southeast parts of the historical Gaziantep Castle in the central ahinbey district, the debris was scattered on the road.
The iron railings that surrounded the court were scattered on the sidewalks. The retaining wall adjacent to the castle also gave way. After the earthquake, large cracks were discovered in some bastions.
The dome and eastern wall of the historical irvani Mosque, next to the castle and said to have been built in the 17th century, on the other hand, partially collapsed.
Gaziantep Castle, a historic site and tourist attraction in southeastern Turkey, collapses after an earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria on Monday.
The castle collapsed in the early hours of February 6 due to a 7.8 magnitude earthquake.
“The earthquake destroyed some of the bastions in the east, south, and southeast parts of the historical Gaziantep Castle in the central ahinbey district, and the debris was scattered on the road,” Turkish state-run news agency Anadolu reported.
“The iron railings that surrounded the castle were strewn across the surrounding sidewalks. The retaining wall adjacent to the castle also gave way. Large cracks were discovered in some bastions,” according to the report.
According to the report, the dome and eastern wall of the historical irvani Mosque, which is located next to the castle and is said to have been built in the 17th century, also partially collapsed.
According to archaeological excavations, the castle began as a watchtower during the Roman period in the second and third centuries C.E. and gradually expanded.
According to Turkish Museums, the official site of museums and archaeological sites in the country, it took its current form during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Justinian (527-565 C.E.).
It was most recently the Gaziantep Defense and Heroism Panoramic Museum.
Since the initial tremor, one of the strongest to hit Turkey in a century, there have been over 18 recorded aftershocks measuring 4 or higher on the Richter scale.
More than 15000 people have been killed across Turkey and Syria in the affected areas.
According to Turkey’s Vice President Fuat Oktay, approximately 10000 buildings in ten Turkish cities have been damaged.
The ruins of Gaziantep Castle on February 6, 2023. Photo from Anadolu Agency via Getty Images