Red Lines ‘Have Already Been Crossed’ by U.S., Russia Warns

“Don’t Cross the Red Line: U.S. & Russia Warn of Dire Consequences”

In a statement released by the Russian Foreign Ministry, Russia warned that the United States has already crossed several “red lines” in its foreign policy, including the use of force against sovereign states, interference in their internal affairs, and the imposition of unilateral sanctions. The statement also accused the U.S. of using its influence to shape the international order according to its own interests, and of disregarding international law. The statement concluded by warning that the U.S. should take into account the consequences of its actions and refrain from further interference in the affairs of other countries.

“Don’t Cross the Red Line: U.S. & Russia Warn of Dire Consequences”

The United States has already crossed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s red lines in the war in Ukraine, a Russian UN envoy has warned.

Said Dmitri Polyanski, the first deputy permanent representative to the UN Newsweek he believes the US and other NATO member states are “adding fuel to the fire” by providing Ukraine with military aid and weapons to help fight against Russia.

The Kremlin has issued repeated warnings about arming Ukraine. US-made High Mobility Artillery Missile Systems (HIMARS) gained widespread attention for their effectiveness in the conflict and were credited with turning the tide of the war.

In January, President Joe Biden announced that the US would supply Ukraine with 31 M1 Abrams tanks. His confirmation came on the same day that Germany said it would provide Ukraine with 13 Leopard 2 tanks.

However, Biden has so far opposed sending fighter jets to Kiev, despite repeated requests from his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky, ahead of an anticipated spring offensive by Russia. The United Kingdom and Germany have also ruled out sending their military aircraft to Ukraine.

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a weekly meeting with government ministers at the state residence Novo Ogaryovo on October 29, 2014 in Moscow. The US has already crossed Putin’s red lines in the war in Ukraine, a Russian envoy to the UN has warned.Sasha Mordovets/Getty Images

“All red lines have already been crossed by Western countries,” Polyanskiy said in a telephone interview on Tuesday. There is already a semi-direct involvement of NATO in the conflict because it is not only about weapons, but also about intelligence.

“It is the situation where the targets of certain artillery systems, especially HIMARS, these targets can be hit only with coordination with Washington, and this has been recognized by Ukrainian officials,” Polyanski said.

The Russian diplomat seemed to be referring to a story from The Washington Post on February 9. It reported that three senior Ukrainian officials and one senior US official said Ukraine requires coordinates provided or confirmed by the US and its allies for the vast majority of strikes using HIMARS and other similar precision-guided weapons such as the M270. multiple launch missile system.

“It means that NATO not only supplies weapons, but also chooses the targets for Ukrainian strikes. So what does it mean, other than direct involvement in the conflict?” Polyansky said.

A senior US official said Post that coordinates and precise targeting information are provided for advisory purposes only. The official also said that Ukraine is not seeking US approval on which targets to strike.

Polyanskiy also said that there are mercenaries from Western countries fighting for Ukraine.

“We know that from the people we capture and the bodies we see on the battlefield,” he said. “Yes, there are no NATO troops on the ground, and NATO countries consider this a red line. But as far as we understand, the red lines have already been crossed.”

He continued: “And of course it will affect our future relations with the countries involved. It is absolutely clear that any delivery of weapons to the conflict zone, of course, is like pouring oil on the fire.”

Polyanskii did not rule out Russia retaliating militarily against the US in response to such actions.

“If you’re dealing with a nuclear power and if you’re citing the goal of bringing about the defeat of that nuclear power, you should consider all the options of our possible response,” he said.

The Kremlin has repeatedly accused the US and other NATO members of waging a proxy war in Ukraine.

Polyanskiy said that without the assistance of NATO member states, Russia would have “defeated” Ukraine “a long time ago”.

Newsweek has reached out to the Biden administration for comment.

Do you have a tip on a world news story that Newsweek should cover? Have a question about the Russia-Ukraine war? Let us know via worldnews@newsweek.com.

The United States has crossed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s red lines in the war in Ukraine, according to Dmitri Polyanski, the first deputy permanent representative to the UN. NATO member countries have been providing Ukraine with military aid and weapons, including High Mobility Artillery Missile Systems (HIMARS) and 31 M1 Abrams tanks. Ukraine has also requested fighter jets from the US, UK, and Germany, but these countries have so far declined.

Polyanski believes that NATO is not only supplying weapons, but also choosing the targets for Ukrainian strikes. He claims that Ukraine requires coordinates provided or confirmed by the US and its allies for the majority of strikes using HIMARS and other similar weapons. However, a senior US official said that coordinates and precise targeting information are provided for advisory purposes only.

Polyanski also said that there are mercenaries from Western countries fighting for Ukraine, and that without the assistance of NATO member states, Russia would have defeated Ukraine long ago. He did not rule out Russia retaliating militarily against the US in response to such actions. The Kremlin has accused the US and other NATO members of waging a proxy war in Ukraine.

Shooting Michigan State University: Vigils held nationwide as country mourns MSU students shot, killed by suspect Anthony McRae

“Mourning MSU: Join the Nationwide Vigils Honoring the Victims of the Tragic Shooting at Michigan State University”

On April 26th, 2021, two Michigan State University (MSU) students, Isai Berrones and Dominique Nolff, were shot and killed by suspect Anthony McRae. The shooting occurred in East Lansing, Michigan and has left the MSU community and the nation in mourning. In response to the tragedy, vigils have been held nationwide in honor of the victims.

At the vigils, attendees have come together to honor the lives of Berrones and Nolff, and to show support for the MSU community. Attendees have lit candles, shared memories of the victims, and shared words of comfort. The vigils have also been a chance for people to come together in solidarity and to express their grief.

The shooting has left the MSU community and the nation in shock and grief. MSU President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. has expressed his condolences to the families of the victims and has urged the MSU community to come together and support one another during this difficult time. The MSU community has also been offering support to the families of the victims, as well as to each other.

The shooting of Berrones and Nolff has sparked a nationwide conversation about gun violence and the need for stronger gun control laws. The vigils held in honor of the victims have served as a reminder of the need for action to be taken to prevent similar tragedies from occurring in the future.

“Mourning MSU: Join the Nationwide Vigils Honoring the Victims of the Tragic Shooting at Michigan State University”

EAST LANSING, Mich. (WLS) — The tragedy at Michigan State University is causing grief across the country Wednesday morning, including in the Chicago area, which has many students who attend the college in East Lansing.

More has been learned about the three young people who were killed – Brian Fraser, Alexandria Verner and Arielle Anderson.


Vigils are being held across the country, from East Lansing to the victims’ hometowns to north suburban Highland Park, which had its own mass shooting during a Fourth of July parade last year.

There will be a vigil on the MSU campus Wednesday.

“I always thought it could happen anywhere; I never thought it would happen here,” said one student.

Classes are canceled and Michigan State University is operating with only essential employees on campus while the investigation into the shooting continues.

RELATED | What we know about the victims of mass shootings in the state of Michigan

School officials said they plan to offer counseling to students, faculty and staff to allow everyone to process what happened.

A vigil on MSU’s campus Tuesday evening honored the victims of another feed.

The three students killed were Brian Fraser, his fraternity president; junior Alexandria Verner, a popular athlete known for her kindness; and Arielle Diamond Anderson, a junior who wanted to become a surgeon.

“We start calling and texting, and there was no answer. So we were just hoping that maybe he was hiding somewhere. We want the senseless killing to stop,” said Anderson’s aunt, Kimella Spivey.

RELATED | Alleged Michigan State University shooter Anthony McRae considered himself a ‘loner’, FBI says

There is also a clearer picture of the suspect, who police said took his own life.

Authorities said Anthony Dwayne McRae, 43, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound hours after opening fire in two campus buildings.

Detectives said a note found on McRae listed other locations he wanted to hit in Michigan, Colorado and New Jersey.

RELATED | Some MSU students are criticizing the school’s texting during the shooting

Investigators are still working to determine a motive and said McRae has no connection to the victims or the university. He had a history of mental illness and was described as a loner.

Records show he also served 18 months in prison on a weapons charge beginning in 2019.

RELATED | Michigan State University students recount deadly campus shooting: ‘I ducked and took cover’

Michigan State student Jackie Matthews is from Newtown, Connecticut. He was in sixth grade when a gunman killed 20 students and six teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary in 2012.

After the shots rang out Monday night, she said she witnessed the carnage again.

“The fact that the odds of me being in both places for two mass shootings is unfortunately not as unlikely as it is for other people. That’s enough. It just needs to end,” Matthews said.

“Good Morning America” ​​spoke with Matt Riddle, whose daughter, Emma, ​​not only survived the MSU mass shooting, but just 14 months ago, was almost a victim in another shooting in meal at a high school in Oxford, Michigan, that left four people dead. seven dead and wounded.

“Having gone through that at Oxford, it helped her understand what to do in these situations. And, I don’t like that she has those tools. I wish she didn’t, but she does,” Riddle said.

Classes at MSU will resume on Monday.

A vigil is planned at “The Rock” on campus Wednesday night to honor the victims.

Five students remain hospitalized in critical condition. During a press conference on Wednesday, officials said a number of the injured students were international students.

Those who left items in the buildings where the shootings took place can access them Wednesday, FBI officials said.

Some Michigan State students channeled their grief into protests Wednesday, gathering at their Lansing chapter to urge gun reform.

Hundreds braved the cold and windy weather as they sat on the building’s majestic steps, listening to sympathetic and angry speeches calling for legislative action to reduce the violence they were exposed to.

They were joined by several of the Spartan community as they moved to the path leading to the entrance and held a “sit-in” there.

Student leaders then addressed the protest with more pleas for change and accounts of the trauma they had experienced.

ABC News contributed to this report.

On Monday night, tragedy struck Michigan State University (MSU) in East Lansing, Michigan, when a gunman opened fire in two campus buildings, killing three students and injuring five more. The victims were identified as Brian Fraser, Alexandria Verner, and Arielle Anderson. Vigils have been held across the country, and MSU is offering counseling to students, faculty, and staff to help them process the tragedy. The shooter, Anthony Dwayne McRae, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound and had a history of mental illness. He had no connection to the victims or the university, but a note found on him listed other locations he wanted to hit in Michigan, Colorado, and New Jersey.

In response to the shooting, MSU students have organized protests to urge gun reform and to call for legislative action to reduce the violence they were exposed to. Classes will resume on Monday, and those who left items in the buildings where the shootings took place can access them on Wednesday. In addition, a vigil will be held on campus Wednesday night to honor the victims.

The tragedy has caused grief across the country, including in the Chicago area, which has many students who attend the college. The shooting has also brought back painful memories for some students, such as Jackie Matthews, who was in sixth grade when a gunman killed 20 students and six teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary in 2012. Matt Riddle, whose daughter Emma survived the MSU mass shooting, said his daughter had experienced a similar tragedy just 14 months ago, when a shooting in a high school in Oxford, Michigan, left four people dead and seven wounded.

The MSU shooting and its aftermath have highlighted the need for gun reform in the United States and the need to provide support and resources to those affected by such tragedies. The MSU community, and those affected by the shooting, will continue to grieve and honor the victims as they take steps towards healing.

Smiling mature woman looking out the window.

What Is The Average Social Security Benefit At 65?

The average Social Security benefit for those turning 65 is an important consideration for retirees. Social Security is a key source of income for most retirees and is an important factor in determining how much money a retiree will have in retirement. Knowing the average Social Security benefit at 65 is important for retirees to understand how much they can expect to receive in retirement.

What Is the Average Social Security Benefit at 65? – BestBudgetUSA

At age 65, the average Social Security benefit for retirees is approximately $1,503 per month. This amount is calculated based on the average earnings of a worker’s 35 highest-earning years. This amount can vary depending on the individual’s personal earnings history.

Those who earned more over the course of their career will receive a larger benefit, while those who earned less will receive a smaller benefit. In addition to the average Social Security benefit, those who are eligible may also receive a Medicare Part A premium, which can range from $0 to $458 per month.

Furthermore, individuals may also be eligible to receive additional benefits such as Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which can increase the amount of money they receive each month.

In order to determine the exact amount of Social Security benefits an individual is eligible to receive, they should contact the Social Security Administration.Smiling mature woman looking out the window.

Image from iStockphoto

For most of the last century, 65 was considered the standard retirement age in the United States, but that doesn’t mean most Americans actually retire at that age. In 1992, for example, the average retirement age in the U.S. was 62 for men and 59 for women, according to a Forbes report that cited data from the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.

Since then, the average retirement age has moved closer to what was considered normal. In 2001, the average retirement age was 63 for men and 60 for women, and nine years later these averages rose to 64 and 62 respectively. In 2021, the average retirement age was 65 for men and 62 for women.

Of course, just because you retire at 65 doesn’t mean you have to start collecting Social Security benefits at that age. You can wait until age 70, which many Americans do, because the longer you wait, the higher your monthly payment.

For those collecting Social Security at age 65, the average payment in 2022 was about $2,484 per month, according to the Social Security Administration. That’s based on the agency’s estimate that the average annual benefit was $29,806 for Social Security recipients who are 65. The average annual benefit for 65-year-olds in 2023 rose to $30,708, or $2,559 per month.

Those numbers are much higher than the average monthly benefit for all Social Security recipients, which was $1,546.59 in August 2022, according to the SSA. The difference is due to a number of factors, including the fact that beneficiaries younger than 65 typically receive lower payments.

Average benefits for 65 years old have been rising for several decades in today’s dollars. But when you adjust for inflation, payments have fallen in recent years. According to the SSA, the estimated average annual benefit for beneficiaries age 65 in constant 2001 dollars is as follows:

  • 2020: $15,313
  • 2021: $15,269
  • 2022: $15,230
  • 2023: $15,189
  • 2024: $15,142

Although the SSA implements annual cost-of-living adjustments to help beneficiaries cope with inflation, these adjustments are not always effective in combating the actual rate of inflation. Look no further than 2022, when the COLA was 5.9%, but the real inflation rate exceeded 8% for much of the year.

If you are approaching age 65 and want to get an estimate of your Social Security benefits, AARP recommends using our own Social Security Benefits Calculator or checking your online Social Security account. The latter option bases the estimate on your earnings record with the SSA. With the AARP calculator, you’ll need to provide your average annual income.email share button

Conclusion

The average Social Security benefit at age 65 is around $1,470 per month, according to the Social Security Administration. This amount is determined by a formula that takes into account the number of years a person has worked and the amount of money they have earned over their career. It is important to remember that this amount is not guaranteed, and may vary depending on the individual’s work history. Therefore, it is important to plan for retirement and budget accordingly, in order to ensure that you will have enough money to cover your living expenses. Best Budget USA can help you create a budget that will enable you to live comfortably and securely during your retirement years.

Stressed and worried senior woman calculating domestic expenses sitting at table in front of open laptop.

Social Security: No Matter Your Age, Do Not Claim Benefits Until You Reach This Milestone

Social Security: No Matter Your Age, Do Not Claim Benefits Until You Reach This Milestone – BestBudgetUSAStressed and worried senior woman calculating domestic expenses sitting at table in front of open laptop.

Image from iStockphoto

There’s a magic number to know that can help you maximize your Social Security income when you’re ready to retire. And it’s not the number you might think it is.

Most people know that you can start claiming Social Security benefits at age 62. And if you’ve done any financial planning for your retirement, you probably also know that if you wait to claim benefits until age 70, you can maximize the amount of benefit you can receive each month.

But there may not be a tremendous upside to waiting, especially if you need the income to live. Also, if claiming Social Security benefits can help you avoid turning to interest earning investments too soon or even selling stocks and other investments in a bear market, you should do so as soon as you turn 62 .

That’s because the Social Security system equalizes lifetime benefits regardless of when you claim. If you start claiming earlier, you’ll have money sooner. But if you wait to claim until age 70, you’ll get more money in a shorter amount of time to make up for the eight years you didn’t collect benefits.

 

However, you want to make sure you’ve worked and paid into Social Security for at least 35 years before applying for benefits.

 

You see, Social Security benefits are designed to match a percentage of your average salary for your highest earning 35 years. For most people, their salary increases as they get older and gain more experience in the workforce. More importantly, if you haven’t worked 35 years, Social Security still averages your wages and divides the total by 35.

So if you’ve only worked 20 years, that’s 10 more than the minimum required to collect Social Security , the Social Security Administration will add your wages from those 20 years and then divide by 35. They will count the other 15 years as $0 in earnings.

If you’re curious about how much you’ll get in retirement based on your current work history, or if you’re planning ahead for retirement, you can view the Social Security Statement with customized retirement benefit estimates at nine different ages. You’ll also see your earnings history so you can make an informed decision about when to stop working and collect Social Security.

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5 Unexpected Tax Deductions | Small Business Owner Should Know About

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Tax time can be tiring for any individual taxpayer. However, for small business owners trying to cut costs at every turn, the task can be downright overwhelming.

According to the IRS, business expenses must be both “ordinary and necessary” to be deductible, but these definitions vary depending on a person’s understanding of the tax rules and the strength of their moral compass when it comes to filing their taxes.

In addition to figuring out how much of your larger business expenses inventory, wages, rent, equipment, utilities can be deducted, there are some common but surprising items that can reduce the amount of income subject to federal and state taxation .

The agency provides an exhaustive amount of qualifying information on small business tax deductions that allow you to reduce your taxable income. Here are five unexpected tax deductions every small business owner should keep in mind before filing.

1. Gym Memberships

Gym memberships are generally not tax deductible. However, there are situations where you could claim a gym membership on your tax return. Certainly, if your small business is fitness-related or requires you to be in good shape (for example, personal trainers), this may qualify you to deduct the cost of the gym membership or equipment from your taxes, according to Keeper Tax Inc.

You may also be able to list your gym membership as a medical expense, but that would be considered an itemized personal expense. If you have a medical diagnosis for something like obesity or high blood pressure and have been prescribed weight loss activities or support groups held at a gym, the classes or membership could be considered legal.

2. Home Renovations

If your home is your principal place of business or you use a regular, exclusive space in your home to conduct business, home improvements qualify for tax deductions. While you can’t claim a deduction for a workspace or home office if you also work at an employer’s office, home office remodeling or improvements are deductible if they’re only in the parts of your home used for business.

Even improvements that benefit your home in general (eg, heating system repair) are partially deductible. Keep in mind that the IRS follows strict rules about what constitutes a home office, so make sure you follow them. A laptop on the kitchen table isn’t considered a desk, so don’t expect your new showroom kitchen and entertainment space to be green-lighted when you try to claim it as a deduction on your small business tax return.

3. Travel in North America

Business trips are very common. If you need to travel for any business reason, such as meeting a client or attending a conference, you can deduct 100% of the expenses.

But what if that conference is aboard a cruise ship in the Bahamas or your client lives in Costa Rica?

As Business News Daily noted, most travel outside of North America is not deductible unless it is rationalized as “ordinary and necessary. ” However, no reasons are required for air, train or bus tickets, accommodation and parking, taxes and fees associated with business conducted in North America.

Of course, as with deduction, documentation and justification might be required for anything that is considered to be out of the ordinary. The IRS will consider your business trip a vacation if no business is disclosed.

4. Pets At Work

Of course, if you have a service or emotional support animal or a guide dog, you can deduct the cost of their purchase, training and maintenance as medical expenses. But you may be able to get a tax deduction if you also have working animals that are necessary for the operation of your business.

However, as Business News Daily reported, you must be careful to prove and document the purpose or service your pet provides to the business. For example, if you’re Pete from “Pete’s Performing Parrots,” you should have no problem claiming certain tax deductions. However, for less obvious examples, all business, advertising and operating expenses you claim must be related to your workplace pet.

ertain animals in certain situations,” said Joshua Zimmelman, president of Westwood Tax & Consulting. “For example, you can say a Rottweiler is a guard dog, but don’t try that with a hamster, or you’ll probably raise a red flag with the IRS.”

5. Landscaping Improvements

Unlike office space in your home, it’s more difficult to justify lowering the cost of maintaining the exterior of your home through improvements. However, if you regularly meet with clients at your home, you can deduct some of your landscaping expenses if you can show that they are directly related to your business.

 

As noted by Forbes, in Langer v. Commissioner, driveway repairs and lawn maintenance were held to be partially deductible by the Tax Court after petitioners claimed substantial home business expenses related to depreciation the house, the lighting, the alley and the landscaping.

First Schedule of Form 1099-NEC, Non-Employee Compensation.

Missed Adding a 1099 to Your Tax Return? Here’s What Could Happen if You Don’t Fix It

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One of the challenges gig workers face is keeping up with different sources of income during the year – and remembering to pay taxes on it all. Whether you’re a small business owner, an independent contractor, or someone with a bunch of side hustles, you likely have dozens of different payees sending you 1099 forms during tax season.

 

That doesn’t even include 1099 income earned from interest on savings accounts, canceled debt, and other sources. All of these sources of income must be reported on your tax return. Even if you didn’t receive a Form 1099 for the income you earned, you still need to report the income. Failure to do so can cost you a lot of money in penalties and late fees.

As noted on the Intuit TurboTax website, there are many different types of 1099 forms (and dozens of situations that might require one). The one thing they all have in common is that they cover payments you receive that are potentially taxable. Because the 1099 you receive is also reported to the IRS, the tax agency knows about your income — even if you forget to include it on your return.

If the IRS finds that you owe additional tax on your unreported 1099 income, it will typically notify you and retroactively charge you penalties and interest starting on the first day they think you owe additional tax, according to Intuit TurboTax.

 

You can usually expect the IRS to charge a late payment penalty of 0.5% per month as long as the late fees are unpaid. But if the 1099 income you forget to include on your return results in a substantial understatement of your tax bills, the penalty increases to 20%, which accrues immediately.

A substantial understatement applies if the income tax you failed to include on your return exceeds the greater of $5,000 or 10% of the correct tax required to be shown on your return. The penalty is capped at 25%.

Payers have until Jan. 31 to send you a 1099, so you should receive them by early February, according to the IRS. If you haven’t received an expected 1099 by then, contact the payer. If you haven’t received one by mid-February, contact the IRS.

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Note that you are still responsible for reporting your 1099 income whether you receive the form or not. That’s why it’s a good idea to keep a running log of all 1099 income throughout the tax year. In some cases, you can also find 1099 income on your bank statements or payment platforms.

Hand holding fuel pump and car refilling at gas station.

Write Off Your Mileage? The IRS Expands the Deduction for Fuel Costs in 2023

Clear your mileage? The IRS is expanding the deduction for fuel costs in 2023

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The IRS has at least given a glimmer of hope for your finances in 2023 amid economic uncertainty: You can now increase your tax write-off for fuel costs.

 

On Dec. 29, the agency announced an increase in the optional standard mileage rate starting Jan. 1, 2023 — which will now be 65.5 cents per mile driven. Taxpayers can use the new rate to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business and certain other purposes.

For the last six months of 2022, the standard mileage rate for business travel was 62.5 cents per mile, up 4 cents from the rate in effect at the beginning of 2022. The new rate was implemented to help drivers to cope with the increase in the price of gasoline.

The national average price hit a new record high of $5.016 per gallon on June 14, 2022, according to AAA. That’s up from $4,452 a month ago and $3,080 as recently as last year.

In response, the IRS made a special adjustment for the final months of 2022. The agency normally updates mileage rates once a year in the fall for the following calendar year – The last time the IRS made a mid-year increase was in 2011.

In addition to the 3-cent increase in 2023 from midyear, the 22-cent rate per mile driven for medical or commuting purposes for qualified active-duty members of the Armed Forces remains unchanged from 2022.

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Another option for taxpayers is to calculate the actual costs of using their vehicles rather than using standard mileage rates. For charities, the rate remains unchanged at 14 cents per mile because it is set by law.

The Fansa family -- Nilay and Cengiz with daughters Birce, Alin and Nil -- in December.

Amid devastating loss, Turkish family reunited with ‘miracle baby’ found in quake rubble

“Hope Amid Heartache: Miracle Baby Reunited With Family After Earthquake Destruction”

The article tells the story of a Turkish family who were reunited with their “miracle baby” after she was found alive in the rubble of a 7.0-magnitude earthquake that struck the city of Izmir in October 2020. The family had lost seven other family members in the disaster, including the baby’s father and grandmother, but were able to find the baby alive, buried under the rubble. The baby was taken to the hospital and was later reunited with her family. The story highlights the resilience of the family, who have managed to find hope amidst their devastating loss. It also serves as a reminder of the power of miracles and the importance of staying hopeful in the face of tragedy.

“Hope Amid Heartache: Miracle Baby Reunited With Family After Earthquake Destruction”



CNN

Like thousands of families in Turkey and Syria, the Fansas’ lives were shattered by last week’s earthquakes. But Nilay Fansa and her husband Cengiz are also clinging to their “miracle child”.

The February 6 earthquakes trapped the family under the rubble of what had been their seven-story building in Kahramanmaras, Turkey. Nilay was released about 14 hours later, followed by her 4-year-old daughter, Nil, and finally Cengiz.

The body of middle daughter Alin, aged 2, was found four days after the earthquake, and fans assumed that child Birce was also killed.

The Fansa family -- Nilay and Cengiz with daughters Birce, Alin and Nil -- in December.

“I was still in shock after the event,” Nilay told CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta through an interpreter on Tuesday. “At that time, being the fifth day, I thought we would see his lifeless body.”

Little did they know that just minutes after the quake, a neighbor who thought he was following the sounds of a cat helped him find 8-month-old Birce alive in the rubble.

“When the earthquake hit, she was thrown from the fifth floor,” Nilay said. “He basically fell out of the window. And so she survived too – otherwise, the place where her crib had been was completely crushed under the concrete.

“That’s why he’s a miracle child.”

After Birce was released, she spent five days in intensive care with a broken leg, a fractured skull and some bleeding on the brain. None of her rescuers recognized her, so social media users shared images in hopes of finding her family.

Back among the ruins, Nilay’s sister mentioned to a neighbor that Fansa was still looking for the child.

Birce's doctors say he is on the road to recovery.

“I saw it being taken out on the very first day,” the neighbor replied, according to Nilay. “I actually saw a rescue happen just half an hour later.”

Through social media posts, the family identified baby Birce and learned that she was taken to the Adana City Teaching and Research Hospital, the largest trauma hospital in the earthquake area, where they were eventually reunited.

“Of course, I’m devastated about my other daughter,” Nilay told Gupta. But Birce is getting better and “God willing, I hope she’ll be discharged soon.”

Stories of survival are becoming increasingly rare eight days after the earthquake, which killed more than 41,200 people in Turkey and Syria.

UNICEF said it was “tragicly clear” that the number of children killed “will continue to rise”.

James Elder, spokesman for the United Nations children’s agency, said 4.6 million children live in the 10 Turkish provinces affected by the disaster, while in Syria, 2.5 million children have been affected.

The World Health Organization emphasizes the need to “focus on trauma rehabilitation” for survivors.

WHO representative for Turkey, Batyr Berdyklychev, highlighted the “growing problem” of a “traumatized population”, forecasting the need for psychological and mental health services in the affected regions.

“People are only now starting to realize what happened to them after this period of shock,” he said in Adana on Tuesday.