Cavusoglu: Turkey sympathizes with Nepalese earthquake victims

mevlüt cavusoglu
Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu says he called his Nepalese counterpart and conveyed Turkey's solidarity with quake-shaken country.

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Turkey “shares the grief of Nepal,” after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake rocked the country on Saturday.

“Today I called Foreign Minister (Mahendra Bahadur) Pandey to express our sympathy and underline that Turkey is ready to extend any help,” Cavusoglu tweeted on Sunday. 

The 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck 80-kilometers (50 miles) from Kathmandu, decimating parts of the capital, reportedly triggering landslides in the western Gorkha district, causing an avalanche on Mount Everest and loss of life throughout the country.

The death toll in Nepal climbed toward 2,500 on Sunday as rescuers unearthed the victims of a powerful earthquake.

The figure, confirmed by Nepali police, has risen steadily as emergency services explore the wreckage of collapsed buildings, particularly in the Kathmandu valley.

There have been 773 people killed in Nepal’s densely-populated capital Kathmandu, while the Himalayan nation’s central region, close to the epicenter of Saturday’s 7.8-magnitude quake, has seen 1,055 deaths.

Nearly 7,500 people have been injured.

The densely-populated Kathmandu valley has been the region worst-hit by the earthquake with more than 600 people killed.

Meanwhile, a strong aftershock hit Nepalon Sunday afternoon, the day after a powerful earthquake caused widespread damage and killed more than 1,800 people.

The 6.7-magnitude shock, 65 kilometers (40 miles) east of capital Kathmandu, struck at 12.54 p.m. local time (0809GMT) at a depth of 10 km, the U.S. Geological Survey reported, adding that such a shallow shock was likely to cause damage within a 50 km radius.

In a written statement issued Saturday, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said some Turkish citizens in Nepal had been contacted. No Turkish casualties have been reported.

“Turkey offers its condolences to the Nepali people and government due to the losses in the earthquake and has launched efforts to provide humanitarian assistance to Nepal,” the statement said.

– Turkey extends helping hand to Nepalese people

An aid team from Turkey has started its relief work in Katmandu, under the coordination of the Turkish Prime Ministry’s Disaster Relief Agency.

A written statement from Turkey’s health ministry said Sunday that a field hospital with 50 beds is ready to serve.

The statement also said that there is a national medical rescue team made up of 10 volunteers in Katmandu. The team consists of a thoracic surgeon, a general surgeon, an anesthesia technician, two emergency medical specialists and nurses.

Turkey’s Red Crescent also sent aid equipment and food to the quake-hit country, as well as a team from the Red Crescent’s Pakistan representative.