In two telegrams signed by the Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin, one addressed to the Most Reverend Marek Solczyński, Apostolic Nuncio in Türkiye, and the other to Cardinal Mario Zenari, Apostolic Nuncio in Syria, Pope Francis expressed his sadness and spiritual closeness to all those affected by the devastating earthquake that shook the two countries on Monday, 6 February, claiming tens of thousands of lives. The Turkish President declared 10 provinces have been stricken by the devastating earthquakes. The death toll from the Türkiye–Syria earthquakes has surpassed 20,000. At least 18,342 people have died in Türkiye, according to officials, while at least 3,377 have been killed in Syria. The following is the English text of the Holy Father’s telegrams.
To the Most Rev. Marek Solczyński.
His Holiness Pope Francis was deeply saddened to learn of the huge loss of life caused by the earthquake in the area of southeastern Türkiye, and he sends the assurance of his spiritual closeness to all those affected. Entrusting those who have died to the loving mercy of the Almighty, he sends heartfelt condolences to those who mourn their loss. His Holiness likewise prays that the emergency personnel will be sustained in their care of the injured and in the ongoing relief efforts by the divine gifts of fortitude and perseverance.
To Cardinal Mario Zenari.
Deeply saddened by the significant loss of life caused by the earthquake in the area of north-western Syria, His Holiness Pope Francis offers heartfelt prayers for the souls of the deceased and for all who mourn them. Entrusting those affected by this disaster to the providence of the Almighty, he prays in particular for the emergency personnel involved in the ongoing relief efforts. As a renewed sign of his spiritual solidarity, His Holiness invokes upon the long-suffering Syrian people the divine blessings of strength and peace.