By Aamir Latif
KARACHI, Pakistan (AA) - Pakistan has dispatched its first batch of rescue teams and relief goods to Türkiye for victims of Monday's massive earthquakes.
A C-130 plane carrying a search and rescue team from the Pakistan Army took off from Chaklala Airbase in Rawalpindi late Monday, said a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office.
A 50-member rescue team along with 25 tons of relief goods left for Türkiye through a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight Tuesday morning, the statement added.
Another C-130 plane carrying seven tons of relief goods including medicines, tents, blankets and other relief items will be flying to Istanbul from Pakistan’s northeastern city of Lahore later in the day.
From Wednesday onwards, PIA flights will be carrying 15 and seven tons of relief goods to Türkiye and Syria on a daily basis, the statement added.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif along with Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari will leave for Türkiye on Wednesday to express their solidarity with the earthquake victims, local media reported.
At least 2,921 people were killed and 15,834 others injured in 10 provinces of Türkiye due to two strong earthquakes that jolted the southern part of the country, an official from the nation’s disaster agency said early Tuesday.
Early Monday morning, a powerful magnitude 7.7 earthquake struck Pazarcik district of Kahramanmaras province and strongly shook several other provinces, including Gaziantep, Sanliurfa, Diyarbakir, Adana, Adiyaman, Malatya, Osmaniye, Hatay and Kilis.
Then at 13.24 p.m. (1024GMT), a 7.6 magnitude quake centered in Kahramanmaras’s Elbistan district struck the region.