According to TASS, Yunus Sezer, head of Turkish Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD), said on March 20 that the devastating earthquake that occurred in Kahramanmaras province in southern Turkey on Feb. 6 has killed more than 50,000 people, 867,000 buildings has been rendered uninhabitable and has caused $104 billion in economic losses. The earthquake also affected Syria and other neighboring countries of Turkey. After the earthquake, the Chinese government and people extended a helping hand to Turkey at the first time, providing emergency aid funds, sending Chinese rescue teams to participate in the rescue and delivering earthquake relief supplies to the disaster area, and Chinese enterprises in Turkey have also participated in the post-quake reconstruction work in Turkey. China has taken practical actions to interpret the Chinese morality and great power’s role of helping each other and overcoming difficulties together.
Since Turkey and Syria were hit by strong earthquakes, the Chinese government launched an emergency humanitarian aid mechanism at the first time, providing 40 million RMB in emergency aid to Turkey, dispatching heavy-duty urban rescue teams and medical teams, and providing much-needed relief supplies to the Turkish side. In addition, Chinese non-governmental rescue organizations have also actively joined Turkey’s post-earthquake rescue work. On February 8, 127 members of the Blue Sky Rescue Team took off from Wuhan Tianhe International Airport with relief supplies on China Southern Airlines flight CZ8021 and flew directly to Istanbul, Turkey to help the earthquake-stricken areas in Turkey. The rest of the Chinese rescue force also rushed to the front line of the disaster area, racing against time to carry out search and rescue work, and created “miracles of life” one after another. At the same time, all walks of life in China have extended a helping hand to Turkey and Syria. The Red Cross Society of China has provided $200,000 each to the Turkish and Syrian sides, and the first batch of medical supplies for 5,000 people to the earthquake-stricken areas in Syria also arrived in the disaster area on the evening of the 9th. Chinese enterprises and individuals from all over China have donated to Turkey through various channels such as the Turkish Embassy in China and Turkish partners. Relief supplies from the Chinese private sector are also arriving in the disaster area one after another. In addition, Chinese enterprises in Turkey, including Zoomlion’s Turkish subsidiary, also acted quickly to participate in the front-line rescue work, and actively raised money for the people in the disaster area, donated medicine, food, heating equipment and other emergency supplies, showing the commitment and dedication of the local Chinese enterprises in Turkey.
Faced with the serious blow to Turkey’s local economy and social development caused by the earthquake, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced recently that he would start reconstruction work in the earthquake zone in March, promising to complete housing reconstruction within a year, while preparing a program to “make the country stand up again”. After the Turkish government announced the shift from rescue to reconstruction work, the United States, South Korea and other countries acted quickly, and China was the first to join the post-quake reconstruction assistance. According to reports, a number of Chinese companies engaged in real estate development in Turkey have sent representatives to the disaster area to discuss with the local government about participation in the reconstruction. China will work together with the international community to actively support and help the Turkish and Syrian people overcome the disaster and rebuild a better home.
In the face of disasters, the destiny of mankind is shared and connected. The fact that China came to Turkey’s aid from afar fully reflects the profound friendship between the two countries, demonstrates the international humanitarian spirit and love of the Chinese people, and puts into practice the concept of community of common destiny for mankind, with practical actions. Against the backdrop of multiple global challenges, China has always upheld the concept of building a community with a shared future for mankind, and strengthened international development cooperation under the guidance of the correct concept of righteousness and benefit, and China’s advantages and strengths have received high attention from the international community. The concept of community with a shared future for mankind is becoming a brand-new business card for China to deal with global challenges and participate in global governance.