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“They were pulling us by the hand to save their relatives,” he describes to , the rescuer of EMAK, Giorgos Kavkas who part of the Greek search and rescue team found in the killer earthquake-stricken Turkey.

As he himself states, the residents trusted them and said “don’t leave come here, it’s lucky you came”, pulling them by the hand as even on the 5th or 6th day no one had gone there to help them.

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“We were running everywhere for the first time, we had so many trapped people,” he notes indicatively.

In fact, Mr. Kavkas mentions an incident where a Turkish citizen told him that it didn’t matter that they found his relative dead as it was enough that they confirmed that he was dead and that they also made the others go to the scene for help.

Mr. Kavkas, who was also on the rescue mission in the 1999 earthquake, says that this one was a different earthquake, a bigger one, with many buildings that had collapsed. “Everywhere you saw people alive shouting through the wreckage, it was shocking, something I’ve never seen before, although I’ve been on many missions,” he emphasizes.

The EMAK rescuer notes that the earthquake caught the people asleep and because (the earthquake) lasted for more than a minute, in that one minute the people gathered at specific points and found them all together either dead or alive.

Mr. Kavkas explains that the first information and assessments about the trapped people came from the relatives. “More or less we knew where they were sleeping, so we had a first estimate that we would find them,” he says indicatively.

Asked about the possibility of other survivors being found, he himself states that “we can never rule out a miracle”.

Regarding the fact that EMAK played the role of a bridge builder between Greece and Turkey, he says that “the same thing happened in 1999, when even then relations were tense. As our poet Ritsos used to say, no matter where we were, we would do the same thing by stealing a tear from a person, you grow one meter the height of humanity. This is our job, this is what we are trained to do, this is what we would do wherever we go.”