Turkey delivers second consignment of medical gear to US: report

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A second Turkish military plane took off from an airbase near Ankara on Thursday carrying more medical aid to the United States, which has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, The Associated Press reported.

The cargo plane is carrying a second consignment of personal protective equipment, including masks, hazmat suits and disinfectants, the Defense Ministry announced.

Turkey also dispatched a planeload of medical supplies on Tuesday that included 500,000 surgical masks, 4,000 overalls, 2,000 liters (528 gallons) of disinfectant, 1,500 goggles, 400 N-95 masks and 500 face shields.

The items dispatched Thursday were sent in boxes displaying the words of 13th-century Sufi poet Jalaluddin Rumi in Turkish and English: “After hopelessness there is so much hope and after darkness there is much brighter sun.”

Turkey’s deputy foreign minister, Selim Yavuz Kıran, and the US Ambassador to Turkey, David Satterfield, were at the military airbase to see the plane off.

“We stand fully with our strategic partner,” Kıran later tweeted.

Separately, a Turkish military plane carrying medical supplies, including masks and disinfectants, also left for South Africa late on Wednesday, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s spokesman said meanwhile that Turkey was sending medical supplies including masks, overalls and test kits to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza.

“Turkey will continue to stand by the Palestinian people,” the spokesman, İbrahim Kalın, wrote on Twitter. “Keep humanity alive so that people can live.”

Turkish officials say the country has donated medical supplies to a total of 55 countries — including Britain, Italy and Spain.

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