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Earthquake in Turkey and Syria: B-FAST logistics team takes off from Brussels

16:44 11/02/2023

A logistics team from Belgium’s rapid intervention first aid and support facility B-FAST flew to Adana in Turkey on Saturday morning from Melsbroek military airport, reports RTBF.

Part of the country’s inter-departmental disaster relief structure, it will help build a field hospital following Monday's violent earthquakes that killed more than 22,000 people in Turkey and Syria.

A reconnaissance team had already travelled to Turkey on Wednesday to establish initial contacts and find the location for the hospital.

The military plane that took off from Melsbroek air base on Saturday had around 40 people on board, mainly specialised in logistics. They will participate in the installation of a hospital in Turkey, made up of several dozen containers, reports the FPS Foreign Affairs. It still does not know the exact location of the medical facility and when it will be operational.

Once it can accommodate the injured, a new flight will be scheduled to Turkey for doctors and nursing staff. The hospital aims to be able to take care of around 100 wounded people per day and provide shelter for a further 20.

In total, Belgium will send around 80 people to Turkey to participate in the construction and management of the field hospital. "Never before has such a large medical team been sent abroad from Belgium following a disaster," said interior minister Annelies Verlinden.

Photo: Belgian A400M aircraft assisting B-FAST operation © Gert-Jan D’Haene/Belgian Defence

Written by The Bulletin