Turkey president accepts problems with earthquake response as death toll passes 16,000 – BBC News

Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accepted that his government encountered problems in its response to two catastrophic earthquakes.

However, he also defended his government’s response, saying it was “impossible” to prepare for the scale of the disaster.

Critics claimed the emergency services’ response was too slow and the government was poorly prepared.

Erdogan said unity was required in the aftermath of the disaster, with him telling reporters: “In a period like this, I cannot stomach people conducting negative campaigns for political interest.”

Over 16,000 people are known to have died from the earthquakes, which struck near Gaziantep, in south-east Turkey, on Monday.

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