The future daughter-in-law of Albania’s prime minister was among dozens of people killed in the country’s devastating earthquake this week.
Kristi Reci, 25, died in the 6.4-magnitude earthquake along with her father Eduard, mother Dolora and brother Klaus.
Her fiance Gregor Rama, the son of prime minister Edi Rama, revealed on Instagram that ‘the closest person to me’ was among the victims ‘found under the rubble’.
The PM revealed today that the death toll had risen to 49 after another three bodies were pulled from the rubble overnight, with hopes fading of finding any more survivors.
Kristi Reci (pictured left), 25, was one of the victims killed in the Albanian earthquake this week. She was the fiancee of Gregor Rama (right), the son of Albania’s prime minister
Kristi Reci died in the 6.4-magnitude earthquake along with her father Eduard, mother Dolora and brother Klaus (their names are pictured on a poster in Albania this week)
Albanian PM Edi Rama, pictured shaking hands with rescue workers in Durres on Wednesday, has suffered a personal family tragedy in the earthquake
Search and rescue: Albanian firefighters search for survivors under the rubble of a collapsed building in Durres yesterday with hopes fading of finding any more people alive
Today rescue crews are winding down their search operation, limiting their efforts to a collapsed beachfront hotel in the port town of Durres.
Search efforts have already ceased in the other badly damaged town of Thumane, where the defence ministry said no more were missing after more than 20 bodies were pulled out over the last three days.
Rescuers have worked in difficult conditions as hundreds of aftershocks have continued to rattle the region.
There have been more than 500 aftershocks since Tuesday’s initial quake, some with a magnitude of more than 5.0, rocking buildings and terrifying residents.
‘It’s a difficult operation, but that’s why we’re here, we’ve been doing this for a long time,’ said Italian rescuer Michele Melosi.
Italy, France, Romania, Turkey, Greece, Croatia, Montenegro, Kosovo and Serbia have sent 200 specialised troops, tools and teams of tracker dogs to help the relief effort.
‘Hope dies last,’ he said, recalling how survivors were found after four days in the 2009 earthquake in the Italian city L’Aquila.
Loved ones have watched in horror over the past few days as rescuers unearthed bodies covered in a grey film of dust.
Rescue workers and firefighters carry the body of a victim found under the rubble of a collapsed building in the town of Durres yesterday
Turkish rescuers – who are among emergency workers deployed from across Europe – search in the wreckage of a collapsed building in Durres yesterday
Rescuers have worked in difficult conditions as hundreds of aftershocks have continued to rattle the region
The bodies of the Reci family mother and son were found in an embrace in Durres after the corpses of the father and daughter had been pulled out before.
Health minister Ogerta Manastirliu said the total number of injured now stands at 2,000 after Tuesday’s pre-dawn quake.
Thousands of people have been displaced, either because their homes were severely damaged or because they were still unsafe due to the continuing aftershocks.
On Wednesday night authorities in Durres moved those who had been sleeping in tents to hotels and a sports centre.
The government has declared a state of emergency for 30 days in Durres and Thumane and festivities for the country’s independence day have been cancelled.
The cash-strapped government has appealed to the public for donations of money instead of goods.
Illegal construction is rife in Albania, one of Europe’s poorest countries. Chaotic development exploded after the fall of communism in 1990 and many buildings lack proper permits.
Prime minister Rama has promised to rehouse the newly homeless by next year.