Shafaq News/ After 13 days of relief efforts in the earthquake-stricken areas of Turkey and Syria, the relief team of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) returned home on February 19, where it was welcomed by Prime Minister Masrour Barzani.
On February 6, a team of 82 doctors and officials from the ministries of health and interior, along with a convoy of 35 ambulances, four mobile hospitals, and several trucks loaded with supplies and equipment following an emergency aid call by the Turkish government.
In a statement to Shafaq News Agency, the head of the Kurdistan relief team, Raad Najmuddin, said, "the specialized team quickly headed to the next quake-affected areas to provide aid to the quake victims and search for survivors. Our work coordinated with the Turkish Disaster Management Agency (AFAD)."
The Kurdistan relief team continued their humanitarian efforts around the clock in Gaziantep (Deluk) in northern Kurdistan and offered relief to the families who survived the earthquake but lost their houses.
"The team composed of personnel from the ministries of health and interior and the Barzani Charity Foundation was the first team to reach the disaster-stricken areas, and remained there for 13 days, working in three shifts."
"We provided first-aid care to five thousand injured and sick individuals, recovered 70 bodies, rescued dozens of people from under the rubble."
The death toll from the massive earthquake that hit parts of Turkey and Syria on Feb. 6 continues to rise as more bodies are retrieved from the rubble of demolished buildings. A magnitude 6.4 earthquake that struck the already battered province of Hatay this week damaged or demolished more buildings, compounding the devastation. The combined death toll in Turkey and Syria now stands at 47,244.