U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Office of the Spokesperson
February 9, 2023
The below is attributable to Spokesperson Ned Price:
Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke today with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu to express our continued support for Türkiye and the Turkish people in the wake of devastating earthquakes. They discussed additional assistance the United States can provide to support Turkish relief efforts, and Secretary Blinken pledged to continue to do all that we can in coordination with Türkiye to assist the victims of the earthquake in both Türkiye and Syria. U.S. support to-date includes deployment of over 150 people as part of two highly trained urban search and rescue teams to one of the hardest hit areas and airlift missions by U.S. Black Hawk helicopters in support to rescue operations.
We are grateful to the Government of Türkiye for re-opening the border so aid can flow into northwest Syria, and we welcome news today of the first UN aid convoy arriving via the Bab al-Hawa crossing. We call on the Assad regime to immediately allow aid in through all border crossings; allow the distribution of aid to all affected areas; and to let humanitarians access all people in Syria who are in need, without exception.
In both Türkiye and Syria, the United States will remain committed to doing whatever it takes, for as long as it takes, to provide necessary assistance to those impacted by these earthquakes. The United States will continue to support the people of Türkiye and Syria, and we welcome and encourage support from our international partners in this time of great need.