Earthquake response: NATO to deploy shelter facilities to Türkiye

  • 09 Feb. 2023 -
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  • Last updated: 17 Feb. 2023 10:37

NATO Allies agreed on Thursday (9 February 2023) to deploy fully-equipped temporary housing to Türkiye, in order to help accommodate people displaced by the devastating earthquakes of 6 February. NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander Europe, General Christopher G. Cavoli, will direct the effort.

Flags at NATO headquarters in Brussels

Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomed the decision, saying: “NATO stands in strong solidarity with our Ally Türkiye, and the deployment of these shelter facilities will help to save lives. NATO Allies and partners are providing substantial support to the relief efforts, and we will continue to do all we can to assist those in need.”

The shelters are normally used by NATO as a deployable headquarters complex for exercises and operations. They can be equipped with a number of amenities including heating, power generators, and medical treatment areas. NATO military authorities are now exploring the best logistics and transport options, and the timelines for the deployment. This capability is maintained by the NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) and is stored at its Southern Operational Centre in Taranto, Italy. Once in place, this-semi permanent capability will complement the winterised tents already being provided by Allies and partners.

Thousands of emergency response personnel from more than 20 NATO Allies and 30 partner countries, including invitees Finland and Sweden, are now engaged in relief efforts. This includes the provision of search and rescue teams with rescue dogs, fire fighters and structural engineering teams, medical personnel and supplies, and seismic experts.

Support is being delivered through NATO’s Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Centre (EADRCC), which is the Alliance’s principal civil emergency response mechanism in the Euro-Atlantic area. The Centre is active all year round, operational on a 24/7 basis, and involves all NATO Allies and partner countries. It functions as a clearing-house system for coordinating both requests for and offers of assistance mainly in case of natural and man-made disasters.