Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of the Republic of Türkiye, has recently awarded the State Medal for Sacrifice to the ‘Operation Gallant Knight 2’ team within the Joint Operations Command of the UAE Ministry of Defense in recognition of the team’s efforts in search and rescue in the country’s earthquake zones on February 6.
In a tribute to the Turkish and international search and rescue teams at the Presidential Complex in the capital, Ankara, Erdogan presented the medal to the commander of the field hospital and the commander of the operation’s search and rescue team in appreciation of the UAE’s search and rescue efforts in earthquake-hit areas, UAE national news agency WAM reported.
The UAE sent 58 planes to Türkiye carrying more than 906 tons of medical, relief, and food supplies, along with search teams totaling 110 people, debris removal machinery, and a medical team including 75 doctors and specialized technicians equipped with medical supplies. The UAE also established a field hospital to treat the injured in a correctional facility in Gaziantep with a capacity of 50 beds and a second hospital in Hatay with a capacity of 200 beds. In total, the UAE delivered 1,732 tents to house approximately 12,000 beneficiaries.
Saeed Thani Al Dhaheri, UAE Ambassador to the Republic of Türkiye, attended the tribute and participated in a panel discussion entitled “International Solidarity and Disaster Relief, We Stand by Türkiye’s Side”, held at the Directorate of Communications of the Office of the Presidency of the Republic of Türkiye at the presence of the ambassadors of Japan, Hungary, and Greece to Türkiye.
During the function, Al Dhaheri stressed the UAE's firm commitment to solidarity in response to disasters and its willingness to assist countries in times of need. He pointed out that the UAE, under the guidance of its leadership, launched Operation Gallant Knight 2 and operated an airlift that transported search and rescue teams, relief supplies, shelter material, and medicines to Syria and Türkiye to provide all possible assistance following the devastating earthquake that struck the two countries.