MOGADISHU, Somalia: Up to 40 Somalis, who got critically injured in Saturday’s truck bombing, have been airlifted to Turkey for medical treatment on Monday.
“The plane has now taken 40 injured and will return as to take other injured,” Deputy Prime Minister Mahdi Ahmed told a news conference.
Ahmed thanked the Turkish government for “its noble humanitarian position in helping Somalia in these critical circumstances.”
Earlier, Turkey’s Health Minister Ahmet Demircan arrived in the Somali capital to oversee Turkish assistance accompanied by 33 staff, including a medical team specializing in emergency services, the Turkish Embassy said in a statement.
The minister said Turkey shared the sadness of Somalis and outlined a plan to treat some of the victims in Turkey.
“Based on instructions given by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, we are working to offer assistance by providing medical aid and transporting casualties to Turkey where they will receive the necessary care,” he told reporters.
A Turkish aircraft loaded with medical aid and emergency services workers, including 13 workers from the Turkish Red Crescent and the Disaster and Emergency Management Authority, landed in Mogadishu.
The Turkish humanitarian and medical aid was welcomed by the Somali government and people.
The blast at a busy road junction, blamed on al-Shabaab, killed 276 people and wounded more than 300 others on Saturday.