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Old 23rd October 2005, 07:30   #1 (permalink)
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Post Turkish PM Erdogan First Foreign Leader in Pakistan Quake Zone....

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan became the first foreign leader to visit Pakistan’s quake zone, a day after the UN urged the world to do more to help the disaster’s 3.3 million homeless victims before the harsh Himalayan winter threatens their survival. Turkish PM Erdogan pledged one million blankets, tents and food.

Erdogan said “Turkey will not leave Pakistan alone in this hour of crisis and extend full support to people of Pakistan.” Earlier, both Turkish and Pakistani leaders held one on one meeting for twenty minutes and later in the presence of members of their respective delegations. Foreign Minister Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri, health minister Naseer Khan, minister for food and agriculture, Sikandar Hayat Bosan, education minister Javed Ashraf Qazi, minister for Northern areas and Kashmir affairs, Faisal Saleh Hayat and foreign secretary Riaz Khokhar assisted Prime Minister.

Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz briefed the Turkish PM Erdogan about the devastations of earthquake and the current situation of Azad Kashmir and NWFP. Later, addressing the press conference along with Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz, Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan said Pakistan and Turkey are bound in close friendly, historical and religious bonds. Pakistan has always stood by Turkey in the hour of test. Turkey will also not leave Pakistan alone in the difficult hours.

"Unluckily I have come to Pakistan at such time when the people are suffering from disaster. People of Pakistan extended enormous support to Turkey when it was hit by earth quake and we can not forget it", Mr. Erdogan underlined.
People of Turkey are taking unprecedented steps to help their Pakistani brethren today, he said adding government units have been mobilized across the country. Several medical and rescue teams are working here. Twelve Turkish planes have landed in Pakistan carrying relief goods, he informed. Not on short term basis but on long term basis, assistance will be provided to Pakistan, he assured. Tents and ten Lakh blankets will be provided to Pakistan.

"Our teams will conduct inspection for the construction of infrastructure. Pakistan woes are our woes", he indicated. All the school children in Turkey are collecting donations for Pakistani brethren. People of Turkey are selling their rings and depositing funds for quake victims.

"I have met traders and exporters and so that maximum aid could be provided to Pakistan", he said.

Turkey will provide to Pakistan 30 thousand tons wheat, 25 thousand tons sugar and cooking oil in massive quantity, he informed. Activities have already been started for reconstruction of buildings. Turkey is setting up hospitals in the affected areas. Elementary education schools will also be established by Turkey.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Pakistani Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz also discussed for extending support to Turkey on its joining the European Union.

Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz while welcoming Turkish Prime Minister said people of Pakistan are grateful to people and government of Turkey for providing massive relief aid at this hour of test. Pakistan had to face a mammoth human disaster in October, 8 killer earthquake. 50000 people lost their lives and thousands of people were injure in this tragedy. Pakistan and Turkey are tied into close friendly ties. Turkish teams are taking part in reconstruction and rehabilitation process and relief and rescue operations in quake stricken areas, he added.

TURKEY ASSURES 150 MILLION DOLLARS FOR THE VICTIMS

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan pledged aid worth $150 million to Pakistan out of which $100 million would be extended as financial assistance and $50 million in the shape of relief goods and technical assistance. Turkey has also assured Pakistan long-term assistance in the reconstruction and rehabilitation of areas devastated by the earthquake.

"Turkey would also provide one million blankets, 50,000 tonnes of flour, 25,000 tonnes of sugar and cooking oil for the quake victims of Pakistan," Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said while addressing a joint press conference with Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz after their talks here at the Prime Minister Secretariat.

Erdogan said that tents would also be manufactured in Turkey and sent immediately to Pakistan in view of the fast approaching winter in the affected areas.

"Turkey would also establish daycare hospitals with necessary medical facilities and elementary schools to help meet educational requirements of the displaced children," Mr. Erdogan added. The Turkish premier said he has brought with him construction and housing experts and that he along with Pakistan’s prime minister would inspect some devastated sites on Friday and discuss the projects in which Turkey can help Pakistan.

SECOND RELIEF PLANE FROM TURKISH CYPRUS TO PAKISTAN

Not only Turkey but the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) also LEFKOSA - A second plane belonging to Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), also has send humanitarian aid materials. The first TRNC aid plane reached the region in the first days and the second TRNC plane has been departed from Lefkose, TRNC. TRNC Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Serdar Denktas will head the team that will hand over the aid to Pakistani officials. The TRNC aid includes 10 tons of medicine, health equipment, tents and blankets. A five-member health team and 12-member search and rescue team that were earlier sent to the region are expected to return to TRNC on Friday evening.

'TWO OLD FRIENDS'

Turkey and Pakistan has been very close friendly countries. Pakistan is called ‘brother country’ in Turkey. Turkish NGOs and governmental institutions organize relief campaigns. Even the Turkish elementary schools send donations to Pakistan Earthquake victims. Turkish SMS operators and Turkish media also organize aid campaigns for Pakistan. The Turkish Red Crescent (Kızılay) also started a donation campaign to help earthquake victims.

Pakistani Leader Musharraf has personal ties and a close relationship with Turkey dating from when he spent time there during his school years. He also speaks fluent Turkish.
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Old 25th October 2005, 05:16   #2 (permalink)
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Post Turkey's Erdogan criticizes relief efforts in Pakistan....

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, who was on an official visit to Pakistan on Friday, criticized the international community for not responding quickly enough to the earthquake hit region in north Pakistan."By the end of 2004, the world had put one trillion U.S. dollars into weapons and we have to ask how much the world has put aside for this disaster in Pakistan," he said after a helicopter flight over the shattered region.


"We have to open our hands more. Today it's Pakistan, tomorrow it can somewhere else," he told reporters through an interpreter in the destroyed city of Muzaffarabad.

"We have to feel what they are a feeling. And as people who are in a responsible position we have to take responsibility for this," he said a day after the United Nations said the world was not doing enough to help.

Turkey has pledged $150 million in immediate aid to Pakistan, although Turkey itself is plagued by earthquakes. Erdogan also noted that Turkey would help in reconstruction.

"There is work to be done here in the short, medium and long term," he said. "We should not stop with the first initial help. We have to fulfil our duties in the medium and long term, from infrastructure to housing."
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