(NEW YORK POST) – A baby girl who was born underneath the rubble of homes destroyed by the 7.8-magnitute earthquake that hit Syria and Turkey this week was given a name and home.
The infant was found still attached to her mother through her umbilical cord underneath chunks of concrete and mangled metal in Jindayris, Syria more than 10 hours after the quake devastated the country.
The baby’s mother, Abu Hadiya, was dead when rescuers found the pair. The child’s father and four siblings also died, but the infant miraculously survived and was taken to a hospital.
Doctors aptly named the infant “Aya,” which is Arabic for “a sign from God,” The Guardian reported Thursday.
Orphaned, Aya was adopted by her great-uncle, Salah al-Badran, who will take her in once she is released from the hospital, the outlet reported.
Dr. Hani Maarouf said Aya’s condition is improving daily and she suffered no damage to her spine as originally feared.
The doctor said the baby’s mother probably gave birth to the girl and then died in the rubble just a few hours before rescuers found them.
Dramatic footage of the newborn being rescued from the debris has been circulating on social media. The video shows a man running over the rubble with the dust-covered infant — her umbilical cord still dangling — in his hands as another man throws a blanket to cover her.
Aya’s body temperature had fallen to 95 degrees Fahrenheit and she was rushed to Cihan Hospital in Afrin for treatment and kept on an incubator.
“Had the girl been left for an hour more, she would have died,” Maarouf said.
She was covered in bruises and cuts and had hypothermia, he added. The area had been hit with a winter storm at the time the earthquake struck.
Her great uncle, al-Badran, will take her home once she is able to be released, however his own house in Jenderis was leveled in the quake as well. He and his household of 11 are living in a tent, he said.
“After the earthquake, there’s no one able to live in his house or building. Only 10% of the buildings here are safe to live in and the rest are unlivable,” al-Badran said.
The pre-dawn earthquake rocked both northern Syria and south-eastern Turkey as most people were asleep in their beds — killing more than 21,000 people.