India's 6th flight reaches Turkey: What is Operation Dost
India has launched Operation Dost, under which it's sending humanitarian aid to earthquake-hit Turkey and Syria. The sixth flight from India carrying relief supplies and rescue personnel arrived in Turkey on Thursday, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said. Hailing India-Turkey relations, Turkey's Ambassador to India Firat Sunel called it a symbolic operation. India has also set up a field hospital in Turkey's Hatay.
Why does this story matter?
- Five major earthquakes have jolted southeastern Turkey and neighboring Syria since Monday leaving nearly 15,400 people dead. As many as 100 aftershocks have hit the region since the first quake.
- The first earthquake, measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale, is said to be one of the deadliest in a decade. Notably, Turkey is in one of the world's most seismically active zones.
Dost is a common word in Turkish and Hindi
Sunel said the humanitarian program was named Operation Dost because "dost" commonly means "friend" in Hindi and Turkish. "We have a Turkish proverb: 'Dost kara gunde belli olur' (a friend in need is a friend indeed). Thank you very much, India," he said.
More teams for assistance and relief material are ready: Jaishankar
101 NDRF personnel reached Turkey
Two teams of India's National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), comprising 101 personnel, reached Turkey for relief and rescue operations. This is the task force's fourth international operation. On Wednesday, specialized search and rescue teams arrived in Turkey on the Indian Air Force's (IAF) four C-17 Globemaster aircraft. Apart from this, India has sent vital medicines, dog squads, drilling machines, and other equipment to Turkey.
Six tons of relief material sent to Syria
IAF's C-130J aircraft landed in Syria with over six tons of relief material, including three truckloads of general and protective gear, emergency use medicines, syringes, and equipment, including ECG machines and monitors. The NDRF teams are also carrying diesel, solar lanterns, and ready-to-eat meals. The Indian Army sent a 99-member team for the 30-bed field hospital set up in Iskenderun, Hatay province.