President Ranil speaks to Turkish counterpart Erdogan, offers support

President Ranil speaks to Turkish counterpart Erdogan, offers support

February 7, 2023   09:20 pm

President Ranil Wickremesinghe spoke to his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan this evening (Feb 07), expressing solidarity with the people of Türkiye where more than 3,500 lost their lives in a series of earthquakes that rocked a large part of the country on Monday.

According to the President’s Media Division (PMD), Wickremesinghe has extended his support for the people of Türkiye and offered to render assistance to the country.

The people of Sri Lanka will stand with the people of Turkey to help them during this disaster situation, Wickremesinghe assured Erdogan speaking further during their brief telephone conversation.

Earlier today, President Wickremesinghe expressed shock and sadness regarding the loss of life, injuries and devastation caused by the series of earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.

He also extended heartfelt condolences on behalf of the people of Sri Lanka to the government and the people of Turkey, especially the families of the bereaved, wishing them a speedy recovery.

Expressing solidarity with the people of Turkey, Sri Lanka Army said preparations were made to dispatch a contingent of 300 military personnel to assist in the search and rescue operations in the quake-hit country where more than 4,000 people were killed.

According to Sri Lanka Army spokesperson Brigadier Ravi Herath, the decision was taken based on the directives of the Defence Ministry and the Foreign Affairs Ministry.

The military contingent, headed by a major general, consists of medical officers and engineering corps officers of the Sri Lanka Army.

Brigadier Hearth noted that this military contingent stands to be dispatched to quake-affected Turkey upon the request of the Embassy of Turkey in Colombo.

The new tally has brought the combined death toll in Turkey and neighbouring Syria to over 5,000 as the figure keeps rising and the rescuers are engaged in a race against time to save those who are trapped under debris.

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