JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com - President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has instructed government ministries to dispatch humanitarian aid to Turkey to alleviate the burdens of the affected people after the 7.8-magnitude quake hit Turkey and Syria on Monday, Feb. 6.
"The assistance is being prepared by the Foreign Ministry, the Defense Ministry, and the Social Affairs Ministry. It is being prepared and will be dispatched as soon as possible," the President told a press conference at Merdeka Palace on Tuesday, Feb. 7.
As of Tuesday morning, officials were still deciding on the appropriate aircraft to transport the emergency aid, he said.
Separately, Vice President Ma'ruf Amin said the humanitarian assistance needs to be dispatched as soon as possible.
"Turkey was among the first countries to assist us during the tsunami in Aceh [on Dec. 26, 2004]. We had also discussed with the President and Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto to send a humanitarian mission [to Turkey]," Amin said after visiting the Java Integrated and Industrial Port Estate in Gresik, East Java, on Tuesday, Feb. 7.
Dispatching humanitarian aid is part of Indonesia's responsibility to the global community as countries are expected to support each other when a disaster strikes, he said.
"The world, indeed, should support each other; this has been our tradition. I also hope Baznas [National Alms Agency] can also contribute to this humanitarian aid," the Vice President said.
Indonesia’s Ambassador to Turkey Lalu Muhammad Iqbal said that the first batch of humanitarian aid, in the form of a freight container full of foods, is on the way from Ankara to Gaziantep, which was among the most-affected cities in the quake.