After the earthquakes in Kahramanmaraş, Bosnia and Herzegovina graduates from Turkey were among the first to go to the region with search and rescue teams.
After the earthquakes of February 6 that affected 11 counties centered on Pazardik and Albistan counties, Turkey’s call for help received support from all over the world, and one of the teams from Bosnia and Herzegovina arrived in the region first.
The head of the Turkey Alumni Association (TÜMED) in Sarajevo, Emin Bagric, who came to the earthquake zone by road, told Anadolu Agency that he graduated from Ankara Yıldırım Beyazıt University.
Indicating that he was aware of the events a few hours after the earthquake, Bagrek said he had contacted his friends in the area but could not reach many of them.
Explaining that he participated in the search and rescue exercises organized under the coordination of the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA), Bagrić said, “As TÜMED, we immediately contacted our members because interpreters would be needed for these search and rescue teams. Thanks to all our graduates, we received a number “Very large number of comments. Then we went by car with the Federation of Mountain Rescue Services of Bosnia and Herzegovina (GSS FBIH). When we left Bosnia, they contacted AFAD in coordination with TIKA. They identified our area as Antakya in coordination with the Disaster and Emergency Management there.” . He said.
Bagric explained that a large camp was established in Hatay for foreign search and rescue teams, noting that they were working on shipwrecks with the coordination of the Disaster and Emergency Management.
Emin Bagric said that the Bosnian search and rescue teams remember the Bosnia-Herzegovina war in the 1990s in the earthquake zone, and concluded his words as follows:
“We are happy if we benefit. The team we coordinated came. After finishing the wrecking work, we visited some villages and left our tents in a village there. The people there wanted to take a picture with us, and when they shared, what I saw was, ‘The donations we collected for Bosnia 30 years ago … These brothers came to us for help. “The word had a deep impact on me. Everyone in Turkey looks at us as one person, and we see Turkey and Bosnia as one. Unprecedented aid is being collected in Bosnia, and everyone wants to make a contribution.”
“I will try to help build those cities from scratch again if needed.”
Dino Basović, who graduated from Ankara Yıldırım Beyazıt University, and went to Turkey from the Serb-majority Sanjak region, said that they would not leave their homeland, Turkey, alone, and that they participated in the search and rescue efforts in the earthquake zones with this motive. .
Stating that they went to Turkey with a team of 20 people, Basović thanked Turkish Airlines, IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation, TIKA and AFAD for their support.
They went to İskenderun, Basović said, “Mustafa Kemal Atatürk made a call to everyone in the Battle of Çanakkale, even all the dynasties went to Sanjak, why? To defend the homeland. Likewise, I went there. The motherland is calling us so what do we do? If we have to give our lives On the ground, we’re ready. We feel very proud, not because of what we’ve done, not because we’ve saved lives, but because we’re with the nation.” Use phrases.
Basović said they had two very emotional moments:
I saw something beautiful, lemon, orange trees. These cities smell of lemons and oranges. I hope one day I want to grow some lemon and orange trees there. I will try to help build those cities from scratch again if needed. My house is like theirs, if you have an apple, you divide it into seven parts, you share everything. You share your pain, you share your love, you share how you feel because our hearts are one. Some people, bad politics, bad words for our government to get cheap points. I don’t get it either. Our President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan made a very good statement and provided the necessary materials. There is food everywhere, shelter everywhere, and accommodations everywhere.”
“Our love for Turkey drove us to go there”
Kenan Ebrisimović, a graduate of Bursa Uludağ University, said he went to the region to work as a translator for the search and rescue teams, and that they were very upset about what happened in the earthquake.
Stating that he participated in AFAD exercises, Ibrisimović said, “Our past in Turkey, our love for Turkey, the bond of love we felt led us to wonder about the people there and go there. We arrived in Hatay at night and immediately joined the search and rescue efforts. We worked in coordination with IHH. It was all too big to be forgotten. That’s why I can’t forget any moment, and we shouldn’t. When we say “Where did you come from?” and “Bosnia”, of course, people treat us differently. For example, I will give an example: The woman we pulled out of the rubble in Iskenderun said, “Who are you?” “Our team is from Bosnia and Herzegovina,” the IHH team manager there asked. When he said that, the woman started crying, it affected us at that moment. He said.
The President of the International Union of Democrats (UID) Sarajevo Emin Česrović Kašli said that they have been involved in the relief efforts from Pomozi.ba, one of the largest aid organizations in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and are in constant contact with the Turkish Embassy in Sarajevo.
Noting that the first trucks with urgent needs were sent to the earthquake areas, and then another 52 trucks were sent, Kashli said:
“As the UID team in BiH, we worked on packaging throughout the process. What I saw there was a source of pride for me and a reason to cry. There were 7-year-olds in the packaging, as well as 70-year-old aunts who couldn’t stand it. For example, a child came for 5 days and got permission from the school just for that purpose, and every morning he used to convince his mother to “let’s go”, but every time I remember who and why this aid went, I can’t stop crying because it’s my homeland that helps and my homeland He is the helper. We feel the pain of our brothers in Turkey with all our hearts even the smallest part. For example, while packing, I found 5 euros in a baby hat and 10 euros in the pocket of a coat. I believe that the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina did not show such solidarity and unity after the war. This It is actually the best indicator of how much pain we share.”
Kashli noted that they had sent two of his friends, scout instructors from the UID administration in Bosnia and Herzegovina, to the earthquake zone and that they had supported the work of AFAD.
The International University of Sarajevo has become a fundraising centre
Founded in 2004 by Turkish entrepreneurs in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the International University of Sarajevo (IUS) has become one of the aid-gathering centers in the country.
Hilal Yanik, Director of the Student and Employment Center at IUS, said that one of their students died in the earthquake area under the rubble and that they first contacted their students in the area.
Burns stated that they had converted the school buildings into warehouses where earthquake aid was collected and that Bosnians of all ages offered support as they could.
They work in coordination with the Turkish Red Crescent and the Sarajevo Embassy in Sarajevo, Janik explained, “For example, a kindergarten contacted us. All these children, for example, wrote a note themselves, and made it in the form of a gift package. We aim to send them to the tents that have already been set up. Especially for children in the regions. Just as the Turkish people did not forget Bosnia and Herzegovina in the war that took place 30 years ago, the Bosnians did not really forget Turkey either. He said.
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