Turkey delivers medical aid to UK to help fight virus
ANKARA- Anadolu Agency
A Turkish military cargo plane carrying medical supplies to assist the U.K.’s fight against the coronavirus pandemic landed in London, the Turkish Defense Ministry said on April 10.
"Our Turkish Armed Forces plane carrying medical supplies prepared for the U.K. to help combat the COVID-19 virus has landed in London," said the ministry in a tweet.
The ministry announced the help operation early on April 10 via Twitter by saying: "At the direction of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkish Armed Forces aircraft that will transport to the United Kingdom the medical aid supplies prepared by Turkey’s Health Ministry to be used in the fight against COVID-19 has departed Etimesgut/Ankara."
“At the direction of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the Turkish Armed Forces aircraft that will transport to the United Kingdom the medical aid supplies prepared by Turkey’s Health Ministry to be used in the fight against COVID-19 has departed Etimesgut/Ankara,” the Turkish Defense Ministry said on Twitter.
The aid carried to the U.K. by Turkey includes protective masks and overalls.
There was also a quote by Sufi poet Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi on the aid boxes, saying: “After hopelessness, there is so much hope and after darkness, there is the much brighter sun - Rumi.”
On April 8, U.K. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab thanked Turkey in a phone call with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu for sending medical supplies to help the country deal with the coronavirus pandemic, according to state-run Anadolu Agency.
Raab said the move is an “indication of a strong friendship between the two countries.”
Turkey on April 10 also sent medical supplies to Libya to help fight the novel coronavirus.
“At the direction of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan as part of the preventative measures against COVID-19 virus, medical supplies were sent to our Libyan brothers and our military training cooperation and consultancy teams who are on duty in the region,” the Defense Ministry said in a separate tweet.
Turkey has been helping a number of countries to step up their fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
It also sent medical aid to five Balkan countries including Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, and Kosovo on April 8, as well as to Italy and Spain - the countries in Europe worst-hit by the virus - last week.
NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg had praised Ankara for the aid, along with Italy and Spain.
NATO’s strategic military command also acknowledged Turkey for sending aid to Bosnia and Herzegovina among other Balkan countries, saying “we are stronger together.”
“Turkey provided aid to Bosnia and Herzegovina to assist in the fight against #COVID19,” the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) said on Twitter.
“NATO Allies and partners continue to support each other during this pandemic and show we are Stronger Together.”
In March, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said that 23 countries have requested aid for coronavirus equipment.
On March 11, Turkey became the last major economy to report a case of the coronavirus.