There was growing concern this week over the fate of Istanbul.

Turkey's leading seismologist Ahmet Isikara, has predicted that the entire city could be levelled at any time.

Isikara's prediction came after a major unbroken part of the fault line was discovered under the Marmara sea, just a few miles outside Istanbul.

Initial reports on the earthquake's last week suggest there has not been any significant damage to the numerous multi-national firms that are frequently reinsured through international markets such as Lloyd's.

A number of travel insurers have stopped covering people visiting the city.

One company that is refusing to offer cover is Colombus Direct.

A spokeswoman for the company said: "We have taken advice from a variety of sources including the Foreign Commonwealth Office and our medical assistance people and are no longer covering people who travel to Istanbul."