M’sian Rescue Worker Narrates Touching Interactions With Earthquake Victims In Turkiye
In the face of the three earthquakes that have hit Turkiye and Syria within the past month, Malaysian authorities have made commendable efforts to aid the nation, particularly in its search and rescue operations.
Malaysia sent several groups of rescue workers and two tracker dogs to support the mission last week, and PM Anwar Ibrahim visited the tragedy’s vicinity to show Malaysia’s support for Turkey following the devastating quake.
Among them stood the director-general of the Military Forces Health Services, Dr. Zulkeffeli Mat Jusoh, who was in Turkiye as part of the Op Starlight mission which aimed to construct the Malaysian Field Hospital (HMM).
Through an emotional conversation with Bernama, he related touching accounts of his experiences during the rescue effort whereby victims graciously showed tremendous gratitude towards those who had flown in to help, from the very moment they landed on the nation’s grounds.
“When we prepared to pray as soon as we touched down at Istanbul Airport, this elderly man was fervently praying for our team to avoid obstacles for our rescue operation. We also received food from Umrah pilgrims who had newly arrived from Makkah,” he said.
Dr. Zulkeffeli, who recently returned from a 2-day trip to Malaysia, also remarked that when travelling from one of the worst-hit regions at ground zero to HMM in Adiyaman, he and his team spotted a kebab stand and chose to took the opportunity for a much-needed break.
He claimed that the kebab vendor refused to take even one lira after discovering that the crew was from Malaysia, “despite their own complete misery”.
To quote Dr. Zulkeffeli, “they would express their gratitude in every conceivable way. The Turkiye folk welcomed us. The government’s initiative to send a medical team creates a picture of unlimited brotherhood that shows we will assist in times of need regardless of national borders, despite the fact that our contribution is modest.”
A group of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) from Cappadocia, which is around 500 km from Adiayaman, also paid him and his crew a visit. They came to HMM to personally thank the Malaysian team who had participated in the expedition. The Malaysian crew also acquired assistance from a number of Charities and average citizens who provided translation services, fuel for generator sets, winter-specific headwear, food, and many other facilities.
“Further, NGOs descended on the villages to transport sick people who needed our help. Given that there is a nearby hospital that was impacted by the earthquake, we were essentially serving as a referral hospital,” said the director-general.
Last but not least, Dr. Zulkeffeli praised the MAF employees and medical officers for maintaining their positive attitudes in the despite of hardships including subzero temperatures, inadequate shelter, and a shortage of warm clothing to withstand the biting weather.
According to Bernama, since its opening on February 14th this year, the HMM in Adiyaman has seen 164 patients, including children and expecting women. To assist earthquake victims, the HMM has 60 beds and is furnished with an operating room, intensive care unit (ICU), radiography, and laboratory capabilities.
Additionally, it offers nine specialties, including primary medicine, orthopaedics, surgery, anaesthesia, maxilo-facial surgery (which treats problems with the face, head, neck, jaw, and sinuses), obstetrics and gynaecology, paediatrics, ophthalmology (which treats eye-related conditions), and emergency care.
Click here to find out how you can provide monetary assistance to the victims.
Individuals who are looking to volunteer for Turkiye’s rescue missions are encouraged to reach out to trusted NGOs of their choice. To ensure the validities of these bodies, conduct a search or call via official websites such as Companies Commission of Malaysia (SSM) or Malaysian Registrar of Societies (ROS) beforehand.