Local and International News Recaps

Catch up on recent developments around the world


Photo from Unsplash

Turkey and Syria Earthquakes

Early morning on Feb. 6, the citizens of Turkey and Syria were awoken by two earthquakes hitting Gaziantep, Turkey, a major city on the Southwestern border of Turkey and Syria. NPR reported that the first quake registered 7.8 magnitude out of a 10 point scale. The second earthquake was registered at a 7.5, both disasters causing massive amounts of damage.  

Still days after the natural disaster, rescue efforts have not stopped. United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said in opening remarks to the press on Feb. 9, that, “we haven’t yet seen the full extent of the damage and of the humanitarian crisis unfolding before our eyes.” To read his full remarks, visit un.org.

The estimates from the World Health Organization suggest up to 23 million people could be impacted by the natural disaster. Reports from the International Federation of the Red Cross say the affected area is the size of France. 

The United Nations, including Austria, Germany, and other allies around the world are continuing to support the Turkish and Syrian governments with supplies, rescue teams, and monetary support. 


Fighter Jets to Ukraine from Poland, Poland is doubtful 

War is still raging in Eastern Europe between Ukraine and Russia, after Russia’s initial invasion of Ukraine in 2022. Ukraine President, Volodymyr Zelenksy, has expressed a need for fighter jets to win the war with Ukraine. 

Poland President, Andrzej Duda, spoke to BBC news regarding the decision saying it “was very serious” and “not easy to take.” Since Russia’s invasion, Poland has been one of Ukraine’s strongest allies. Poland was one among several nations that promised to provide more tanks, ammo, and equipment to the front line last month.

BBC News presenter, Laura Kuenssberg, stated that with less than 50 of these aircrafts in the Polish air force, Duda told her that sending F-16 fighters would be a “major difficulty” and that “we would need many more of them.” He further emphasized that sending a few planes is insufficient because combat aircraft, such as the F-16s, have a “very urgent requirement for maintenance.”


Humpback Whale Found Stranded Near Virginia Beach


On February 7th, 2023, 13 News Now reported that the Virginia Aquarium Stranding Response Team received a report about a dead humpback whale floating in the waters off Virginia Beach.

The Response Team, the Coast Guard, and Army Corps of Engineers retrieved the whale by First Landing State Park. They then brought it back to shore for examination and a necropsy.

Joe Harris told 13 News Now, “We were just driving and smelled an awful smell, then we came here and found it,” he continued, “It’s just very interesting.”

According to The Virginian-Pilot, tourists and beach goers were asked not to interfere with the process and to remain a safe distance from the whale, as the animal is under protection by the marine Mammal Protection Action.

Since the end of 2022, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has reported two other whale strandings in Virginia.

Carly Thompson with the Virginia Aquarium told 13 News Now that there were no signs of entanglement or ship encounters for this particular whale stranding.

On Feb. 8, crews examined the whale and took samples, but information, such as how the whale died, won’t be known for a while.