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Boy survives Turkey earthquake by drinking rain water

October 28, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
Five days after the deadly earthquake, rescuers pulled a 13-year-old boy from a collapsed building in eastern Turkey.

The boy said he survived by drinking rain water that seeped through cracks in the wreckage around him.

The boy's uncle said he didn't even have a scratch. He used shoes as a pillow and would peer through a small gap in the wreckage to see if it was day or night, the uncle told a state-run TV.

The boy was the 187th person to be rescued since the earthquake struck on Sunday.

The quake has killed at least 575 people. About 2,500 people were injured, and thousands were left homeless when the shaking leveled about 2,000 buildings. Another 5,700 buildings were considered unfit for habitation.

Turkey is mostly Muslim, and in Ercis on Friday many people held traditional Muslim prayers outdoors, in parks or in streets strewn with rubble from the earthquake.

"It wouldn't have been considered a sin to not pray today because these people are victims and in a difficult situation," said Selahattin Tasdemir, imam at the Seyid Muhammed mosque. "But their conscience wouldn't allow it. They're used to praying, so we prayed,"

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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