ISTANBUL (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in southern Turkey on Sunday and set off on a tour of the earthquake catastrophe zone accompanied by his Turkish counterpart.
State-run Anadolu information company reported that Blinken and Mevlut Cavusoglu, left Incirlik air base close to Adana by helicopter for close by Hatay province, one of the areas hardest hit by the Feb. 6 quake. Blinken had earlier arrived at Incirlik, the place U.S. troops are primarily based, from Germany.
Blinken is on his first journey to NATO ally Turkey since he took workplace two years in the past. He is because of go to a tent metropolis in Hatay established for these displaced by the earthquake, which has killed at the very least 44,000 in Turkey and Syria, earlier than touring an assist distribution middle, stated Turkish officers who weren’t licensed to be recognized publicly.
On returning to Incirlik, he’ll meet U.S. and Turkish service personnel, in addition to Turkish army households affected by the 7.8-magnitude earthquake.
The highest U.S. diplomat will even examine American assist efforts organized from the bottom and communicate to members of USAID’s Catastrophe Help Response Workforce, a fast response group of catastrophe specialists.
He’ll fly to Ankara later Sunday for discussions with Turkish officers on Monday, together with an anticipated assembly with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. In addition to the results of the earthquake, Blinken is predicted to debate Sweden and Finland’s efforts to hitch NATO, which Turkey is delaying, calling for Sweden specifically to tighten its method to Kurdish rebels that Ankara considers terrorists.