Death toll in Turkey building collapse rises to 17

Death toll in Turkey building collapse rises to 17

Death toll in Turkey building collapse rises to 17

The building in Istanbul's mostly-residential Kartal district collapsed on Wednesday.

The death toll from the collapse of an apartment building in Istanbul rose to 21 on Saturday, as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said authorities have "lessons to learn" from the incident.

He said the government would take "steps in a determined way" after investigators complete their work.

Speaking to reporters at the site, Suleyman Soylu said that a total of 35 people were believed to be trapped under the wreckage and all of them were recovered.

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Environment Minister Murat Kurum, who accompanied Erdogan, said the block housed 14 apartments and three businesses. It was not immediately clear what caused the building.

Experts say a majority of buildings in Istanbul lack proper licenses and are built illegally or without engineering services.

The collapse fuelled criticism of a government amnesty granted a year ago to people accused of building illegally - a measure announced before municipal elections this March.

Earlier Saturday, Erdogan and other officials joined mourners at the funeral for nine members of the Alemdar family who lived in the collapsed building. Seven of them are in a serious condition.

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Two days after the collapse, rescue workers managed to save a 16-year-old buy from the rubble.

The official toll had previously stood at 10 people dead and 13 injured.

Fourteen apartments, housing at least 43 occupants were registered at the site, the city's governor said this week.

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