Armenia offers Turkey “hand of friendship” after deadly quakes

Armenia offers Turkey “hand of friendship” after deadly quakes
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Armenia extended Turkey a "hand of friendship" after last week's twin earthquakes that have so far claimed the lives of nearly 35,420 in the country, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said, after meeting with Armenian counterpart Ararat Mirzoyan.

"Armenia extended a hand of friendship in this difficult time, and demonstrated solidarity and cooperation," Cavusoglu said at a news conference with his Armenian counterpart Ararat Mirzoyan in the capital Ankara.

Cavusoglu said Mirzoyan's visit to Turkey was "meaningful."

Noting that Armenia sent a 28-person search and rescue team to Turkey after the quakes, Cavusoglu said their efforts have continued in Adiyaman since Feb. 8.

"They sent 100 tons of humanitarian aid and said they would send additional aid," he added.

Cavusoglu also reminded that Armenia had sent humanitarian aid to Turkey after the Golcuk earthquake in 1999.

Mirzoyan, for his part, expressed Armenia's willingness to build peace in these difficult times.

He added:

“Such natural disasters and their volumes go beyond the borders of countries, becoming global tragedies. And the world must act with a united front to overcome them. I believe that the international community must not remain indifferent towards any humanitarian crisis happening anywhere around the globe. And it was by this very principle that immediately after the devastating earthquake the government of Armenia made a decision to send rescuers and humanitarian aid to Turkey. I thank Mr. Cavusoglu for his words of appreciation addressed to our rescuers and overall the Armenian presence and support. I am very happy that our rescuers were able to save lives in cooperation with their partners,” the Armenian Foreign Minister said.

The Armenian top diplomat is expected to later visit Adiyaman, where the search and rescue team from his country continues to work.