Turkey delivers 2nd batch of medical aid to Serbia
Aid sent upon directives of Turkish president to help country combat coronavirus pandemic
ANKARA / BELGRADE
A Turkish cargo plane carrying a second batch of medical supplies arrived in Serbia on Saturday amid the coronavirus pandemic.
An A-400M cargo plane departed from the Etimesgut Military Airport in Ankara, Turkey’s capital, to carry the equipment including ventilators, masks, overalls, and safety goggles.
The plane landed at the Nikola Tesla Airport in Belgrade and was met by Turkish Ambassador to Serbia Tanju Bilgic and Serbia's Deputy Prime Minister Rasim Ljajic.
The aid, consisting of 16 tons of medical supplies needed to fight COVID-19, was sent upon directives of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan after a call for help from Serbia.
Receiving the aid, Ljajic expressed gratitude to Turkey for help.
"… the plane is full of protective, medical equipment, disinfectants and other types of supplies and assistance intended for two or three cities, i.e. two or three municipalities in Serbia, "said Ljajic.
He added that in this way, excellent relations between the two countries and the two presidents are once again exposed, as well as Turkey's care for good relations and the people in Serbia.
Bilgic said that Turkey continues to be with Serbia in the fight against the pandemic.
"The aid we delivered today is a result of cooperation with central and local authorities. I hope that this aid will contribute to the fight against COVID-19 in the region. On this occasion, I would like to thank the Serbian authorities for their close cooperation with our country and wish everyone health,” Bilgic said.
The first set of supplies was sent on June 12.
There are over 15,500 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 298 deaths in Serbia, according to data compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.
Since first appearing in China last December, the novel coronavirus has spread to at least 188 countries and regions. The US, Brazil and Russia are currently the countries hardest hit in the world.
The pandemic has killed nearly 525,500 people worldwide, with infections surpassing 11 million and recoveries over 5.88 million.