Israeli foreign minister arrives in Turkey for solidarity visit

The IDF’s “Operation Olive Branches” search and rescue mission pulled 19 people from the debris.

By Pesach Benson, TPS

Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen arrived in Turkey on Tuesday morning to pay a solidarity visit to the earthquake-stricken nation.

“Israel stands alongside Turkey at this difficult time and will continue to assist it through the activities of our forces and providing of humanitarian aid,” Cohen said.

During his visit, Cohen will meet Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu. Cohen will also visit Israeli teams providing medical care and assisting in search and rescue efforts in southern Turkey.

Israel has so far provided Turkey with more than 60 tons of humanitarian aid, including winter clothing, medical equipment and medicine.

The Israeli mission rescued 19 people alive, while Israeli medical personnel have treated about 400 Turks and Syrian refugees.

At an official ceremony at Ben Gurion Airport Monday, Turkish Ambassador to Israel welcomed the mission home. Israel is “a small state with a giant soul,” he said.

The official death toll from Turkey and Syria climbed past 36,000.

World Israel News contributed to this report.