Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has thrown toys to earthquake victims from the bus in the southern province of Hatay, online news outlet T24 reported on March 25.
The footage stirred a huge reaction on social media as people pointed out the lack of basic necessities in quake-hit provinces and deemed Erdoğan's move "disrespectful."
"In Hatay, where we lost thousands of our people, Erdoğan is throwing toys to the earthquake victims while accompanied by an army of protection. Disgrace is leveling up every day!," main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) lawmaker Ali Mahir Başarır said.
Erdoğan, binlerce insanımızı kaybettiğimiz Hatay'da depremzede vatandaşlara otobüsün içinden koruma ordusu eşliğinde oyuncak fırlatıyor.— Ali Mahir Başarır (@alimahir) March 25, 2023
Rezalet, her geçen gün seviye atlıyor!
Gerçekten akıl alır gibi değil! pic.twitter.com/sbPUZAILk2
In a similar manner, Erdoğan on Feb. 27 handed out money to children in quake-hit Adıyaman province.
Erdoğan on several occasions threw toys and tea packages to the citizens during disasters like floods or wildfires.
Turkey’s southeastern region was struck by two major earthquakes on Feb. 6, one at a magnitude of 7.7 and the other at 7.6. The first one’s epicenter was Kahramanmaraş’s Pazarcık district, whereas the second one was the Elbistan district.
The number of citizens who have died in the earthquakes stands at 50,096, but experts fear that the number is much higher, taking into consideration the thousands of buildings that collapsed.
The quakes affected 11 provinces in the region.
Even after almost seven weeks from the earthquakes, victims who continue to live in quake-hit provinces report lack of basic necessities like tents, containers, food, clothing, toilet and shower units and so on.