Japanese team surveying buildings, infrastructure in quake-hit Turkey

A group of Japanese experts is in southern Turkey to survey buildings and infrastructure damaged by last month's earthquakes.

The team is made up of 11 experts including specialists in architecture and urban planning from the land ministry and the Japan International Cooperation Agency, or JICA. They arrived in southern Turkey earlier this month.

On Sunday, the team visited one of the hardest-hit districts in Kahramanmaras.

The experts inspected a damaged condominium to see if the posts and beams were firmly connected by steel reinforcement rods.

They also spoke to residents of the condo about the tremors and damage to interiors.

The team's leader, Odawara Yuichi, from the land ministry, said the aim of the survey is to assess how to provide effective assistance to Turkey based on Japan's experience as a country prone to earthquakes.

The team will conclude the survey on Wednesday.
Additional surveys will likely follow, if necessary, to help Turkey rebuild.

The magnitude 7.8 quake on February 6 and ensuing tremors have left about 54,000 people dead in Turkey and neighboring Syria.

In Turkey, some 230,000 homes and other buildings have been severely damaged.