(TPS) As two Israeli humanitarian delegations prepared to leave for earthquake-striken Turkey on Tuesday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu confirmed that Israel would also provide assistance to Syria after receiving a request conveyed through a third-party.
“I ordered to send, at the request of the Turkish government, rescue teams and medical aid,” Netanyahu said on Monday afternoon in Tel Aviv. “Since a request was also received to do this for many victims of the earthquake in Syria, I instructed to do this as well.”
Netanyahu did not specify who passed along the request, but Hebrew media reports said it was Russia. The Hebrew reports said Israel would provide medication, blankets and tents. Meanwhile, one Israeli aid delegation is due to leave for Turkey on Monday night, with a second larger team departing on Tuesday morning.
More than 1,500 people in Turkey and Syria have been declared dead so far as rescue crews search through the rubble of collapsed buildings. The quake, measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale, struck at 3:17 AM. Tremors and aftershocks were felt as far as Israel, Lebanon, Cyprus and even Egypt. A second earthquake rocked the same area on Monday afternoon.
In 2016, Israel opened a field hospital in the Golan Heights to provide medical aid, fuel and other humanitarian aid for civilians caught up in the Syrian Civil War. The field hospital was closed after Bashar Assad’s regime re-established control of southern Syria in Sept. 2018.
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