Home » UAE’s rapid response to support victims of earthquake in Türkiye, Syria made a difference

UAE’s rapid response to support victims of earthquake in Türkiye, Syria made a difference

by Dubaiforum

ABU DHABI, 16th February, 2023 (WAM) – In the wake of the devastating earthquake that hit Syria and Türkiye, the UAE has demonstrated its longstanding commitment to supporting all affected communities worldwide without any discrimination.

President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan immediately expressed the UAE’s full solidarity with Syria and Türkiye and directed the Joint Operations Command of the Ministry of Defence to launch the “Gallant Knight / 2” operation, aimed at supporting the Syrian and Turkish people. The operation involves the UAE Armed Forces, the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation, the Zayed Charitable and Humanitarian Foundation (Zayed CHF), and the Emirates Red Crescent (ERC).

As of February 16th, the UAE has provided a total of $177 million in aid to support the earthquake victims, including $20 million in response to the United Nations’ urgent appeal for assistance to Syria. The country has deployed 78 aircraft to transport humanitarian aid to both countries and sent 156 tonnes of aid for international organizations through the International Humanitarian City.

To assist in search and rescue missions, the UAE sent two teams comprising 134 members, which have been successful in rescuing victims. The country has also inaugurated two field hospitals with a total capacity of 250 beds and equipped with relevant equipment and staffed by 75 medical professionals to treat the injured.

The UAE launched the “Bridges of Goodness” campaign, led by the Emirates Red Crescent (ERC), with the participation of more than 16 Emirati donors. The country deployed 44 aircraft and provided medical, food, and relief aid to Syria, totaling 1,630 tonnes. The aid includes 2,893 shelter tents for nearly 20,000 people.

In addition, the UAE sent a search and rescue team with 42 personnel to carry out search and rescue missions in Türkiye and has allocated 34 aircraft carrying 447 tonnes of relief supplies, including 70 tonnes of medical assistance, as part of an air bridge to the country. The UAE also sent a search and rescue team with 92 members to perform search and rescue operations in Kahramanmaraş province and sent 927 tents to shelter some 5,000 people. The country opened a field hospital in the Islahiyah region with 50 beds and another hospital in Hatay with 200 beds, equipped with the necessary medical supplies and staffed by a medical team of 75 doctors, nurses, and assistants.

The UAE’s efforts have been praised by the international community and the UN. Martin Griffiths, the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, commended the UAE’s provision of an additional $50 million to earthquake-affected people in Syria. He said that the generous response of the UAE is critical to saving lives and providing much-needed relief to people affected and in desperate need since the earthquake struck Syria and Türkiye.

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