The European Union has mobilized its civil protection mechanism to help Croatia after a 6.4 magnitude earthquake that struck the central part of the country on Tuesday.
Less than 24 hours after a magnitude 5.2 earthquake southeast of the capital Zagreb was followed by a stronger magnitude 6.4 earthquake that caused great damage to Petrinja, a town near its epicenter. It is known that at least seven people died in the earthquake. According to the Croatian police, at least 20 people were injured while a 12-year-old girl was killed in Petrinja and at least five people were killed in a nearby village.
“Most of the center of Petrinja is in a red zone, which means that most of the buildings are unusable,” said Plenković as the tremors caused severe damage to buildings and homes. The Croatian military was deployed to help with the rescue operation.
Austria, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden and Turkey were the countries that provided immediate assistance, including living containers, winterized tents, sleeping bags, beds and electrical appliances and heaters .
Two of the EU commissioners, Dubravka Suica and Janez Lenarcic, traveled to Zagreb on Wednesday, where they met with Plenkovic. Earlier this week, the head of the commission, Ursula von der Leyen, tweeted that the EU was “ready to support” Croatia and added that she would ask the bloc’s crisis commissioner to travel to the country “as soon as the situation so allows. ”
After another strong earthquake in Croatia, the second in the past two days, I spoke to Prime Minister @AndrejPlenkovic again.
We are ready to assist. I asked @JanezLenarcic to be ready to travel to Croatia as soon as the situation allows.
We stand with Croatia.
– Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen), December 29, 2020
In addition to the coordination center for emergency measures, the EU emergency management service Copernicus supports the country by providing maps for the damage assessment of the affected areas.