Deadly earthquake strikes near Greek islands, off Turkish coast in eastern Aegean

WILLIAM MANSELL, ALEXANDRA SVOKOS and ENGIN BAS
·2 min read

A strong earthquake struck close to the Greek island of Samos in the eastern Aegean Sea off the coast of Turkey Friday, resulting in a lot of damage and at least 37 deaths.

The earthquake, measuring 6.6 on the Richter scale, was felt as far away as Athens and Istanbul.

PHOTO: Rescue workers and local people carry a wounded person found in the debris of a collapsed building, in Izmir, Turkey, Oct. 30, 2020, after a strong earthquake in the Aegean Sea shook Turkey and Greece. (Ismail Gokmen/AP)
PHOTO: Rescue workers and local people carry a wounded person found in the debris of a collapsed building, in Izmir, Turkey, Oct. 30, 2020, after a strong earthquake in the Aegean Sea shook Turkey and Greece. (Ismail Gokmen/AP)
PHOTO: Locals and officials search for survivors at a collapsed building after a strong earthquake struck the Aegean Sea and was felt in both Greece and Turkey, where some buildings collapsed in the coastal province of Izmir, Turkey, Oct. 30, 2020. (Tuncay Dersinlioglu/Reuters)
PHOTO: Locals and officials search for survivors at a collapsed building after a strong earthquake struck the Aegean Sea and was felt in both Greece and Turkey, where some buildings collapsed in the coastal province of Izmir, Turkey, Oct. 30, 2020. (Tuncay Dersinlioglu/Reuters)

In Turkey, at least 35 people died and 885 were injured in Izmir, Turkish authorities confirmed, with 243 people being treated in hospitals, according to the health minister. Eight people were in critical condition as of Saturday.

At least 70 people were rescued as a few dozen buildings collapsed in Izmir, according to AFAD, Turkey's Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency.

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NATO's land forces are also headquartered in Izmir, and both NATO and the Air Force say all their personnel are safe and accounted for.

PHOTO: Locals and officials search for survivors at a collapsed building after a strong earthquake struck the Aegean Sea and was felt in both Greece and Turkey, where some buildings collapsed in the coastal province of Izmir, Turkey, Oct. 30, 2020. (Tuncay Dersinlioglu/Reuters)
PHOTO: Locals and officials search for survivors at a collapsed building after a strong earthquake struck the Aegean Sea and was felt in both Greece and Turkey, where some buildings collapsed in the coastal province of Izmir, Turkey, Oct. 30, 2020. (Tuncay Dersinlioglu/Reuters)
PHOTO: Seawater floods a square after an earthquake at the port of Vathi on the eastern Aegean island of Samos, Greece, Oct. 30, 2020.  (Michael Svarnias/AP)
PHOTO: Seawater floods a square after an earthquake at the port of Vathi on the eastern Aegean island of Samos, Greece, Oct. 30, 2020. (Michael Svarnias/AP)
PHOTO: Rescuers search for survivors at a collapsed building after a powerful earthquake struck Turkey's western coast and parts of Greece, in Izmir, on Oct. 30, 2020. (Mert Cakir/AFP via Getty Images)
PHOTO: Rescuers search for survivors at a collapsed building after a powerful earthquake struck Turkey's western coast and parts of Greece, in Izmir, on Oct. 30, 2020. (Mert Cakir/AFP via Getty Images)

The quake struck at 1.51 p.m. local time, just 19 kilometers (close to 12 miles) north-northwest from the Greek island of Samos' capital, at a depth of 10 kilometers, the National Observatory of Athens' (NOA) Geodynamic Institute said.

In Samos, two teens were killed when a wall collapsed on them and at least 18 others were injured according to the local hospital, per local news reports.

PHOTO: TCrushed cars and collapsed buildings lie in the aftermath of an earthquake on the island of Samos, Greece, Oct. 30, 2020. (Eurokinissi via AFP/Getty Images)
PHOTO: TCrushed cars and collapsed buildings lie in the aftermath of an earthquake on the island of Samos, Greece, Oct. 30, 2020. (Eurokinissi via AFP/Getty Images)
PHOTO: People walk past a destroyed house after an earthquake in the island of Samos, Greece, Oct. 30, 2020. (Eurokinissi via AFP/Getty Images)
PHOTO: People walk past a destroyed house after an earthquake in the island of Samos, Greece, Oct. 30, 2020. (Eurokinissi via AFP/Getty Images)

Samos is host to one of the three major refugee camps on the Greek islands. The other two are on Chios, which is about 50 miles north of Samos and directly west of Izmir, and Lesbos, which is about 50 miles north of Chios.

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There were no casualties among the refugees and migrants at the sites on Samos and Chios, according to the Greek Ministry of Migration and Asylum, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees confirmed to ABC News. There are reports of minimal impacts from the earthquake on Lesbos.

UNHCR staff are on the ground and assessing the situation, the organization said. Samos was hosting over 4,000 asylum-seekers and refugees as of Oct. 25.

ABC News' Luis Martinez contributed to this report.

Deadly earthquake strikes near Greek islands, off Turkish coast in eastern Aegean originally appeared on abcnews.go.com