U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Sunday that the state will pledge $100 million worth of aids to support Türkiye and Syria as the countries deal with the aftermath of an earthquake that has claimed the lives of more than 44,000 people.
“The United States remains committed to doing everything we can to help with rescue, relief, and recovery efforts,” said Blinken, who expressed his profound sadness to see the devastating earthquake’s aftermath firsthand, in a tweet.
Blinken also announced the authorisation of an additional $50 million in Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance Funds in response of the earthquake.
The U.S. is also providing $50 million in humanitarian assistance through the State Department and USAID, bringing the total for Türkiye and Syria to $185 million, the department said.
The offered aids are including hot meals, water, medical care and supplies; such as blankets, clothes and hygiene kits, temporary shelter, structural engineers and essential mental health and psychosocial support to affected children, State Department said.
Türkiye was already on the precipice of an economic crisis prior to the earthquake, the costs of aid provision in the short term and rebuilding and recovery in the longer term are massive.
Blinken is expected to meet Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, AFP reported, and this week’s visit to Türkiye is the US diplomat’s first since being assigned as the Secretary of State two year ago.