(JNS) A certificate of appreciation from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was presented to the commander of the Israel Defense Forces’ National Rescue Unit, Col. (Ret.) Golan Vach, who commanded Israel’s rescue mission that helped locate survivors and provide aid during the recent earthquake in southern Turkey.
The Israeli rescue mission was one of the first to arrive to provide aid after the earthquake and succeeded in rescuing 19 survivors from the ruins. The IDF sent 230 medical and emergency response experts to set up a field hospital in Kahramanmaraş, in addition to a 150-member Home Front Command team.
The IDF delegation was supported by emergency medical specialists from the defense and health ministries, fire and rescue services, Magen David Adom, United Hatzalah and Zaka, among others.
The certificate from Erdogan was presented on Memorial Day.
Israel’s deputy ambassador to Turkey, Nadav Markman, who assisted in the rescue mission, said, “We greatly appreciate the gratitude from Turkey. The members of the Israeli delegation acted bravely and professionally. The close cooperation between the IDF, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the other factors in the field made it possible to save many lives, to show the beautiful face of the State of Israel.”