Desperate searches as quake toll passes 46,000

STORY: Rescuers pulled three people out from under a mountain of rubble on Saturday, 12 days after a massive earthquake struck Turkey and Syria.

This man, seen pinned beneath the wreckage, as well as his wife and child were found alive in the collapsed building in Hatay, the southernmost province of Turkey.

The rescue team said the father and mother survived but the child later died of dehyrdration. An older sister and a twin did not make it.

More than 46,000 people have been killed in the earthquake.

The toll is expected to soar, with some 345,000 apartments in Turkey now known to have been destroyed, and many are still missing.

Experts say most rescues occur in the 24 hours following an earthquake and the head of Turkey’s emergency management authority said rescue efforts will largely be called off Sunday night.

This Turkish bulldozer operator working to clear rubble said he tries to find happiness in finding victims' bodies so that families can hold a funeral.

"We are trying to find happiness from the saddest moment in their lives," he said.

But for the families still waiting to retrieve relatives in Turkey, anger is growing over what they see as corrupt building practices and deeply flawed urban development that resulted in thousands of buildings disintegrating.

In neighboring Syria, more than 5,800 deaths have been reported.

The World Food Programme is pressuring authorities in the northwest to stop blocking access to the area as it seeks to help hundreds of thousands of people ravaged by earthquakes.

The area is controlled by insurgents at war with forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Public health is also a major concern, with medics and experts warning of a possible spread of infection in the area where thousands of buildings collapsed.

With so much crucial infrastructure destroyed, aid organizations say the survivors will need help for months to come.