Greece vows to continue humanitarian aid to Türkiye

Greece vows to continue humanitarian aid to Türkiye

Greece vows to continue humanitarian aid to Türkiye

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias promised on Feb. 12 to continue Greek humanitarian assistance to Türkiye over the devastating earthquake.

“We will continue to do our best to overcome difficult times, both at the bilateral and EU level,” the Greek minister said in a joint press statement with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu in the southern quake-hit province of Hatay.

Dendias paid a visit to Türkiye in a show of support, despite a longstanding rivalry between the two NATO countries.

Having a meeting in southern Adana Airport first, the Greek minister with his Turkish counterpart headed to Hatay, where Greek rescuers are helping with search and rescue operations.

“Thank you to the Greek search and rescue teams. From the day they arrived, they made an effort 24/7. Good neighborliness is evident on such days,” Çavuşoğlu said.

“The fact that Dendias is here today shows the solidarity of the Greek government and people with Türkiye. After the earthquake occurred, Greece was one of the first countries to call and help Türkiye,” Çavuşoğlu said.

Despite a history of rivalry with Türkiye that goes back centuries, Greece was among the first European countries to send rescue workers and humanitarian aid on Feb. 6, a few hours after the disaster.

His arrival to Türkiye marks the first visit by a European minister to the country since the earthquake.

The two neighbors, which lie on seismic fault lines, also have a tradition of helping each other in natural disasters. Çavuşoğlu reminded that Türkiye and Greece extended help to each other in 1999 quakes which hit two neighbors one month apart.

Türkiye, Greece should not wait for another earthquake to smooth ties, Çavuşoğlu said and added, “It’s important to support each other in difficult times, but we don’t have to wait for an earthquake or other disaster to fix our relationships. I hope we will make efforts to resolve our differences through dialogue.”

Dendias echoed Çavuşoğlu’s words and said, “I think we don’t need another earthquake to improve our relations.”

The Greek government has so far sent 80 tonnes of medical and first aid equipment.

Mevlut Cavusoglu, Diplomacy, Turkey,