Photo Credit: Eric Marmor/Flash90
Kahramanmaras, Turkey, February 9, 2023.

Azerbaijani journalist Anastasia Lavrina wrote this week: “What happened in Turkey is a terrible situation. This earthquake resulted in the death of thousands and Azerbaijan was the first country to respond.”

Turkish analyst Bartu Eken added that Azerbaijan sent many health workers to the disaster area. According to Azerbaijani journalist Elnur Enveroglu, “On the very first day, Azerbaijan’s Ministries of Defense and Emergency Situations dispatched the rescue teams to the quake-hit areas. A team of 370 Azerbaijanis reached the area to assist in the rescue operations. On the second day of the accident, Azerbaijan sent a team of doctors to assist the injured. We are looking to see what else can be done.”


Lavrina noted that a group of 20 Azerbaijani military personnel was sent to Turkey to help with the earthquake: “The first lady of Azerbaijan and Vice President of Azerbaijan Mehriban Aliyev assigned the Heydar Aliyev Foundation to send humanitarian aid to the brotherly country. Apart from that, Azerbaijan is standing beside Turkey and Azerbaijani citizens are voluntarily collecting humanitarian aid in Baku for victims. Most people send winter material as the weather in Turkey right now is very cold. So, it is tents, beds, blankets, generators, and other items will be collected in Azerbaijan and sent to Turkey soon. And following the instructions of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, rescue forces from the Ministry of Emergency Situations consisting of another 227 people went to Turkey to support rescue operations.”

According to Lavrina, “In this difficult situation, Turkey is not alone. Many countries around the globe including Israel are supporting Turkey by all possible means. This is a demonstration that we are united in times of hardship. We wish Turkey to be strong after dealing with such a terrible situation yesterday.”

Eken said that many people in Turkey are delighted that Israel is sending aid: “Especially seeing the Turkish flag fly in Tel Aviv made the Turkish people happy. Recently, there has been sympathy towards Israel in Turkey, especially among the younger generation.” According to Sadi, “Nearly 700 Israelis left for Turkey and started to save lives in the earthquake zone.”

Enveroglu added that he is looking forward to Israel and other countries helping Turkey: “At this moment, everyone who can help plays a critical role in the rescue of one person at least. We can see how some countries are eager to help and stand with Turkey. Both Turkey and Azerbaijan are grateful for friendly partner countries, who offer sincere assistance and are with Turkey.”


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Rachel Avraham is the CEO of the Dona Gracia Center for Diplomacy and an Israel-based journalist. She is the author of "Women and Jihad: Debating Palestinian Female Suicide Bombings in the American, Israeli and Arab Media."