The European Union is organizing additional humanitarian aid deliveries for survivors of the earthquake in Turkey and Syria, after one of the worst natural disasters in the region’s history left many people homeless and in need of urgent assistance, the European Commission announced on Sunday.
Two planes carrying emergency aid, winter tents and heating equipment landed in Damascus on Sunday with the help of the Syrian Humanitarian Airlift to provide additional support to the earthquake-stricken Syrian population. The EU is delivering a total of 420 tons of aid via the airlift, including 225 tons from the EU’s common humanitarian stocks, worth €1.1 million.
In addition, 15 European countries — Austria, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Germany, Greece, Finland, France, Italy, Latvia, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Sweden, and Poland — have also provided in-kind donations of tents, mattresses, blankets, heaters, hygiene kits, generators, food and medical supplies to Syrian people in need under the EU Civil Protection Mechanism.
The EU Humanitarian Aid department, which has been working in Syria for 12 years, has helped deliver aid from all sides, based on the humanitarian principles of impartiality and neutrality.
The EU has so far allocated some €5.7 million to help people in earthquake-affected areas of Turkey. The EU’s humanitarian partners have been providing food aid, healthcare, drinking water, cash assistance and shelter to the victims since the beginning of the earthquake.
The European Commission and the Swedish Presidency of the Council of the EU, in cooperation with the Turkish authorities, are also organizing a donors’ conference in Brussels in March to support those in need.