The United States has thanked Turkey for donating medical supplies to combat the novel coronavirus outbreak.
“During times of crisis, like the worldwide effort to combat COVID-19, close coordination among like-minded allies and partners is key to developing a swift and effective response. None of us can do this alone,” U.S. Ambassador to Turkey David Satterfield said in a statement on April 28.
“This donation, scheduled for delivery today via Turkish A-400M military aircraft to Andrews Air Force Base near Washington, D.C., includes equipment such as N95 masks, gowns, and face shields to help us slow the spread of COVID-19 in our most hard-hit areas.”
He said that the donation will be distributed to those who need them most across the U.S. by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
“As this delivery indicates, the US-Turkey relationship is strong and one of our most important alliances,” the ambassador said. “We look forward to continuing cooperation with Turkey on this and many other mutual priorities.”
The U.S. Embassy’s official account also posted pictures of a Turkish military cargo carrying medical aid supplies to be delivered to the U.S.
Ambassador Kay Bailey Hutchison, the U.S. permanent representative to NATO, also expressed her gratitude to Turkey for sending medical supplies in support of the U.S.’ fight against COVID-19.
A Turkish military cargo plane carrying medical supplies departed Ankara on April 28 for the US.
“The loading process of the medical aid supplies to be delivered to the US by Turkish Armed Forces aircraft has been completed. Our aircraft carrying the medical aid supplies to be used in combating COVID-19 has departed from Etimesgut Airfield/Ankara,” the Turkish Defense Ministry said on Twitter.
Turkey’s communications director said on April 28 that Turkey stands in solidarity with the U.S., its NATO ally, against the virus.
“Turkey continues to deliver medical supplies to its friends and allies. We are proud to announce that 500,000 surgical masks and other PPE [personal protective equipment] will arrive at @Andrews_JBA tomorrow. We stand in solidarity with the United States, our NATO ally, against COVID-19,” Fahrettin Altun said on Twitter.
Ankara has already sent medical shipments to 55 countries, including Italy, Spain, Britain, Iran, China and others in the Balkans or Africa. Last month it flew 500,000 coronavirus testing kits to the United States.
Turkey also has one of the world’s highest number of registered cases of COVID-19, but officials have reported a slowdown in new cases and fatalities.
Turkey has 112,000 confirmed cases, of which 2,900 have died, according to the Health Ministry. The daily death toll dropped to 95 on April 27, an eighth consecutive daily fall, while new cases fell for a third day running to 2,131.
The United States has reported more than 957,000 cases and nearly 54,000 deaths.