PBBM Says PH Will Send Assistance to Quake-Hit Turkey


PBBM: PH to Send Humanitarian Aid, Healthcare and Rescue Workers to Turkey

President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. has pledged to send basic goods and emergency crew to Turkey and Syria, where two magnitude 7+ earthquakes hit both countries in the early hours of Monday. At the time of writing, The Guardian reports that the death toll from both sides of the Turko-Syrian border has passed 7,800.

“We have organized a group of about 85 personnel together with some goods. Ang hinahanap sa atin ay mga blanket, mga winter clothing dahil siyempre yung mga nasiraan ng bahay sa Türkiye ay wala na silang tirahan,” said President Marcos in an interview during the 2023 National Tax Campaign Launch of the Bureau of Internal Revenue yesterday.

(What they are looking for are blankets [and] winter clothing because, of course, those whose homes were destroyed in Turkey are homeless.)

According to the president, this is a joint effort among his office, the Department of National Defense (DOD) and the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA). Of the 85 humanitarian personnel that will be sent to assist in Turkey, 33 are from the Philippine Armed and Air Forces. The Department of Health’s (DOH) contingent will consist of seven doctors, eight nurses, two medical technologists, and two pharmacists, alongside logistics and administrative officers. The MMDA staff of 12 disaster response workers will be helping in search and rescue operations, much like what they have done in Nepal in 2019 where they were sent after a massive quake shook the country.

The crew will reach Turkey by Wednesday, and all the personnel as well as the supplies will be flown by Turkish Airlines.

The first earthquake occurred west of the city of Gaziantep in Turkey, which registered a magnitude 7.8. It was followed by aftershocks, including an unusually strong 7.5-magnitude tremor in Kahramanmaraş, a province north of Gaziantep. On the Syrian side, most of the casualties occurred in rebel-held areas that have also been dealing with an ongoing civil war.

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