Turkey's 2nd aid package arrives in blast-hit Lebanon
BEIRUT- Anadolu Agency
Hakan Çakıl, Turkey’s ambassador to Lebanon, the Turkish embassy staff and Lebanese officials met the plane at the Rafic Hariri International Airport in Beirut.
AFAD personnel, National Medical Rescue Team and the Turkish Red Crescent will conclude their search and rescue activities in the blast-hit city and will return to Turkey with a military plane. A team of seven people will continue their activities in the region.
Earlier in the day, Turkey's National Defense Ministry said on Twitter that the second aid plane left the capital Ankara for Beirut.
"The Turkish Armed Forces A400M aircraft which will deliver medical supplies and equipment along with personnel from AFAD [Disaster and Emergency Management Authority] to Lebanon took off from Ankara Etimesgut Airbase."
The aircraft was sent on Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's orders.
Just a day after the blast, an earlier Turkish plane carrying aid and a search and rescue team took off from the capital Ankara for Beirut, arriving early the next day, authorities had announced.
The plane was carrying aid material prepared by the Turkish Health Ministry, AFAD, and the Turkish Red Crescent.
It was carrying 21 National Medical Rescue personnel, two emergency units, three tents, medicine and medical equipment, 10 AFAD personnel, equipment, a search and rescue vehicle, three Turkish Red Crescent personnel, a search and rescue team, and medical and humanitarian aid.
According to Lebanon's Health Ministry, at least 171 people have died and over 6,000 have been injured since the explosion on Aug. 4 ravaged parts of the Lebanese capital.
The numbers, though, are likely to rise as efforts continue to find missing people.
The tragedy has come at a time when Lebanon is experiencing its worst economic crisis, including a dramatic drop in the value of the pound against the dollar.