Mexico City Earthquake Witness: “Greek Diaspora of Mexico Safe” (video)

At least 200 people died in Mexico City and in the states of Puebla, Mexico and Morelos, after Tuesday’s powerful earthquake, officials said. Many are trapped under collapsed buildings.

Greek Reporter spoke with Ioannis Almeida (Stamatiades); son of Past President of the Greek Community of Mexico City; Helena Stamatiades, to find out how the people in Mexico City are dealing with the September 19, 2017, earthquake.

Almeida told us that they are fine, but that about 17-20 buildings have collapsed, and they’re still counting.

He also said that people are are trying to find out through social media (Twitter, Facebook etc), if family & friends are okay.

Centres in Mexico City are gathering food, and other supplies that people might need, said Almeida. He also told us that the people who are well & safe, are out in the streets trying to rescue victims of the earthquake, and to help out in any way that they can.

When asked if they have spoken to others in the Greek Community of Mexico City, we were told that the West Side Greek Community & the Greek Embassy, are gathering information about all of them, and that they are expecting that all the Greek and Greek-Mexican families are safe and are waiting for further reports that will be coming out in the following hours.

Almeida also told us that it has been reported that the earthquake was 7.1 on the Richter scale, and that it was felt in the states of Morelos, Puebla, and in the Greater Mexico city area, since the centre of the earthquake was near Mexico City, as well. We were also told that it was extremely strange that today’s earthquake was 32 years to the day, from the earthquake which struck Mexico City on September 19, 1985.

Ioannis Almeida told us that everyone in his family & their friends who are fine, were either at work or at school when the earthquake hit. He also told us that due to the anniversary of the 1985 earthquake, students at school today, were asked to write essays on what to do in the event of another earthquake so as to be prepared. Since the 1985 Mexico City earthquake, schools & businesses have been very conscious of possible future earthquakes, and have been educating and preparing the public, including children, of what to do in an event of another one. Today people in the city were more prepared than they were in the 1985, said Almeida.  He continued to say, “in 1985 we lost between 5,000 and 10,000 people, we shall never know how many people died”. He told us that the army, police and government offices are doing all that they can to help the people in need.

Ioannis Almeida told us that his mother, who died about a year ago, always liked talking with people from Greece, and discussing events and other happenings regarding the Greek Community in Mexico. He wants us to know, that although they (Mexico) has been hit, they are not down. He said that the Mexican people are strong, just like the Greeks, and they will survive this too.

Eleni Balatsas contributed to this report