When it comes to humanitarian crises around the world, Malaysia is always quick to respond with aid when able. We have witnessed this during earthquakes in New Zealand, the Philippines, and war-torn countries like Palestine.
It is truly the best representation of the Malaysian spirit, helping each other out in times of need.
Following Monday’s deadly earthquake in Turkey and Syria that left thousands dead, Malaysia has decided to send two K9 dogs, Denti and Frankie, who will take part in the search and rescue (SAR) mission to find and save victims still trapped in the rubble.
These doggos previously assisted in the rescue mission during the Batang Kali landslide last December that trapped 92 people and resulted in 31 deaths.
The K9 dogs, according to Bernama, are part of the second group of rescuers, which also includes 30 members of the Civil Defense Force (APM) and 20 members of the Special Malaysia Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (SMART).
JBPM Tactical Operations Rescue Team of Malaysia (STORM) chief commander Ismail Abd Ghani told reporters at KLIA that the dogs were trained to sniff out victims, whether they were alive or dead.
“The main purpose of bringing them to Turkey is to maximise rescue efforts when we are there as their role is to determine the victims’ location.
“The dogs are part of SMART, so they are ready to be deployed anywhere abroad,” he said.
When asked if Denti and Frankie would be able to handle the 11-hour flight to Turkey, Ismail said it wouldn’t be a problem because they were evaluated for their ability to travel by air prior to deployment.
They would be handled by firefighters Tony Anak Albert Mani and Y.Thibagaran.
As a show of solidarity with those affected by the disaster, Malaysia recently deployed 70 officers from the Special Malaysia Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (SMART) to Turkey to assist in search and rescue efforts to locate victims of the earthquake.
Yesterday, Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim in a press conference said Malaysia will also donate over RM8.6 million (US$2 million) to Turkey and Syria to help the earthquake victims in both countries.
According to Anwar, the Defense Ministry is also putting together a group of military medics and paramedics to mobilise a field hospital in Turkey.
Thousands of people died in both Turkey and Syria early on Monday morning as a result of the powerful 7.8-magnitude earthquake. The tremors were felt in Cyprus and Lebanon, according to reports.
The death toll from the devastating earthquake in southern Turkey has risen to 7,108, with an additional 40,910 injured.
To ensure the smooth operation of search and rescue operations, Turkey on Tuesday proclaimed a three-month state of emergency in 10 provinces: Adana, Adyaman, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hatay, Kahramanmaras, Kilis, Malatya, Osmaniye, and Sanliurfa.
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