UPDATE – World offers condolences after Turkish helicopter crash

Alaturka Amerika ABD Haberleri


By Havva Kara Aydin

ANKARA (AA) – Condolences poured in from across the world after 11 Turkish soldiers, including a senior officer, were martyred in a helicopter crashed in eastern Turkey on Thursday.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg phoned Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu to convey condolences for the soldiers who lost their lives in the crash, a diplomatic source said.

Stoltenberg stressed that NATO is in solidarity with Turkey, it added.

Also, on a phone call, Libya’s Foreign Minister Mohamed Taher Siala offered his condolences to Cavusoglu.

In a Twitter post, the US Embassy in Ankara said: “Our thoughts are with the families of all those affected, and we wish a rapid recovery to the injured.”

“I received the news that a military helicopter crashed in Bitlis and nine soldiers were martyred. I share the pain of our ally Turkey, wishing condolences to the families of those killed and Turkey,” Dominick Chilcott, British ambassador to Turkey, said on Twitter.

Nikolaus Meyer-Landrut, the head of the EU Delegation to Turkey, said on Twitter: “We share the deep sorrow of Turkey for the loss of 9 military personnel in Bitlis.”

Also, the delegation said: “As the Delegation of the European Union to Turkey, we express our heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of the victims, and to Turkey. We wish for the speedy recovery of those injured.”

“Our heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families and the Turkish nation on the tragic helicopter crash in Tatvan, Bitlis where nine soldiers martyred and four injured,” the Pakistani Embassy in Ankara said on Twitter.

Iran’s Ambassador to Turkey Mohammad Farazmand extended condolences, saying: “I convey condolences to the Government of Turkey, Turkish people and grieving families over a painful incident that nine people lost their lives and four injured, as a result of failing helicopter, belonging to Turkey.”

He also wished a speedy recovery for injured soldiers.

– ‘Deeply saddening event’

Conveying his condolences, Ukraine’s Ambassador to Turkey Andrii Sybiha, said on Twitter: “I wish mercy from Allah to the Turkish soldiers who were martyred as a result of the crash of the military helicopter departing from Bingol, and urgent healing to those who were injured.”

Italy’s Embassy in Ankara said on Twitter: “We learned with pain the news of the tragic plane crash in which nine Turkish soldiers lost their lives and four soldiers were injured. In this sad moment, we stand by the Turkish people and wish our heartfelt condolences to the families of those who lost their lives.”

Salome Zourabichvili, the Georgian president, said on Twitter: "@RTErdogan, my sincere condolences to you and to the people of Turkey over the crash of a military helicopter that has cost too many lives. This is a deeply saddening event and we stand with the families of those who lost their lives."

Georgia’s Foreign Minister David Zalkaliani said: “I express my deepest condolences to our friendly Turkey over the crash of helicopter in the town of Tatvan. Our thoughts and prayers are with victims of this tragedy and with all those who have lost their loved ones.”

He also wished a quick recovery to the wounded soldiers.

Meanwhile, Somalia Justice Minister Abdulkadir Mohamed Nur also took to Twitter to extend his condolences. "I sadly learned that a helicopter belonging to the friendly and brotherly Turkish army had crashed. The pain of the Turkish brothers is our pain too. I wish mercy from Allah to the martyrs who lost their lives,” he said.

At least 11 Turkish soldiers, including a corps commander, were martyred and two others injured as a military helicopter crashed in the eastern Bitlis province.

The contact with the Cougar-type military helicopter, which took off from the eastern Bingol province for the Tatvan district of Bitlis at 1.55 p.m. local time (1055GMT), was lost at 2.25 p.m. (1125GMT).