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Putin Says Russia Ready to Help Syria and Türkiye after Major Quake

Putin Says Russia Ready to Help Syria and Türkiye after Major Quake

Monday, 6 February, 2023 - 09:00
Syrian rescuers (White Helmets) and civilians search for survivors amid the rubble of a collapsed building following an earthquake, in the opposition-held northern countryside of Syria’s Idlib province on the border with Türkiye on Feb. 6, 2023. (AFP/Getty Images)

President Vladimir Putin offered Russian assistance on Monday to Syria and Türkiye after a major earthquake of magnitude 7.8 killed more than 500 people and injured thousands in the two countries.

Russia, which is closely allied with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, maintains a significant military presence in that country.

Putin also has a strong rapport with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Türkiye, a NATO member which has nevertheless sought to mediate in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

"Please accept my deep condolences on the numerous human casualties and large-scale destruction caused by a powerful earthquake in your country," Putin said in his message to Erdogan on Monday.

"We are ready to provide the necessary assistance in this regard."

Separately, Putin told Assad that Russia shared "the sadness and pain of those who lost their loved ones" and said Russia was ready to provide help.

Earlier, Russia's defense ministry said its military facilities in Syria had not been damaged by the earthquake.

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