Jakarta (ANTARA) - Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has conveyed his appreciation for the help from the Indonesian rescue team in evacuating and handling the victims of the recent 7.7-magnitude earthquake in Turkey, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) said.
“Last night (on Wednesday evening), I called and talked with President Erdogan about our medical and SAR teams who are already in Turkey, and he expressed his appreciation (for the teams),” Widodo said, according to a press release issued on Thursday.
He revealed that conversation during a video call with the INASAR (Indonesian Search and Rescue) team and the Indonesian Ambassador to Turkey Lalu Muhammad Iqbal at the National Search and Rescue Agency’s (Basarnas’) headquarters here on Thursday.
The Indonesian President also received a report from the chief of the INASAR team involved in the humanitarian mission in Turkey, Yopi Heryadi.
The INASAR chief said that his team, comprising 48 personnel and 2 sniffer dogs, landed at Adana Airport in Turkey on February 12, 2023.
Upon their arrival, the team members immediately established a base of operation to support their SAR mission in 7 areas, including Antakya, Haraparas, Çekmece, and Cebrail in Hatay province, Turkey.
So far, the INASAR team has located and evacuated 12 victims.
Furthermore, the team has deployed two personnel at the reception and departure center (RDC) of the United Nations' International Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG) to help manage the arrival and return of international Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) teams.
The INASAR team has also stationed an officer at the USAR Coordination Cell (UCC), which is serving as the coordination center for the international SAR operation.
In addition, Heryadi reported that so far, the quake —which occurred on February 6, 2023, and was centered at Kahramanmara province— has claimed more than 30 thousand lives in Turkey.
His team is still continuing to help in searching for and evacuating victims who are still trapped under the rubble.
The disaster has also devastated a number of regions in Syria, which shares a border with Turkey, claiming more than 5 thousand lives.
Indonesia dispatched two batches of logistical assistance, INASAR teams, and medical teams to help the victims of the disaster on February 11 and February 13.
The government is planning to send more assistance to Turkey and Syria on February 20.