ANKARA 

A Turkish plane carrying medical supplies departed from the capital Ankara for Afghanistan on Thursday in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.

“A Turkish Armed Forces aircraft, carrying the medical supplies, prepared by the Health Ministry at the direction of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, for use against the COVID-19 outbreak, took off from Ankara Etimesgut Airbase for Afghanistan,” the National Defense Ministry said on Twitter.

Ten pieces of ventilators, 10 pieces of defibrillators, 10 pieces of oxygen regulators, 3 PCR machines, 10 nebulizers and 30,000 COVID-19 RT-q PCR diagnostic test kits, 25,000 N95 face masks and 50,000 surgical and normal masks were loaded on the aircraft leaving for Afghanistan.

The aid boxes also carried a message for the people of Afghanistan.

“After hopelessness, there is so much hope, and after darkness, there is the much brighter sun,” it said, quoting the words of 13th century Sufi poet Jalaluddin Rumi.

Turkey has helped at least 125 countries with humanitarian aid during the outbreak, including the US, UK, Italy and Spain, making it the world’s third-largest provider of aid during the pandemic.

Worldwide, the pandemic has killed more than 416,200 people, with total infections over 7.36 million, while some 3.45 million people have recovered from the disease, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.

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