Earthquake: Spanish rescue workers, Doctors Without Borders hail professionalism, great logistical effort deployed by Morocco

Earthquake: Spanish rescue workers, Doctors Without Borders hail professionalism, great logistical effort deployed by Morocco

Spanish rescue workers and members of the international humanitarian organization “Doctors Without Borders” who took part in relief operations following the earthquake that shook several regions in central Morocco on September 8 have commended the professionalism, great logistical effort, and the swift and efficient response of Moroccan authorities on the ground to help the affected populations.

Spain is among the four countries whose assistance has been solicited by Morocco to take part in the rescue operations, which also include Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom. King Mohammed VI himself explained that massive aid is not the best option, and that it is preferable to have aid that is useful, effective and well coordinated and with a meticulous assessment of the specific needs on the ground by those in charge of each affected area. Rabat justified its decision on the basis of the “precise assessment” made of the needs following the earthquake and “bearing in mind that a lack of coordination in such situations could be counterproductive.”

On their arrival in Zaragoza on Saturday sept.16, after taking part in rescue operations with their Moroccan counterparts, Spanish firefighters and rescue workers from the Castilla y León region highlighted, in statements to the press, the professionalism of the Moroccan teams deployed on the ground and the level of coordination in carrying out rescue operations.

The expedition leader, Enrique Mur, emphasized the role of the Moroccan authorities in ensuring that rescue operations and the search for survivors went smoothly.

Other relief teams, in particular the Military Emergency Unit (UME), are continuing their mission in the areas affected by the earthquake.

Earlier in the week, Spain’s Minister of Defense, Margarita Robles, praised the logistical support provided by the Royal Armed Forces (FAR) to Spanish rescue workers, enabling them to carry out their mission in the best possible conditions.

Speaking during a visit to a military base in Guadalajara (central Spain), Robles welcomed the mobilization of FAR helicopters to transport Spanish rescue workers to hard-to-reach areas, as well as the collaboration of Moroccan authorities with the Spanish team to provide the necessary support to affected populations.

Spanish rescue workers, particularly from the UME, will remain in Morocco for “as long as necessary”, she added, noting that the search teams from Spain were also delighted with the hospitality and support of the local population.

In the same connection, the international humanitarian organization “Doctors Without Borders” praised on its official website the swift and efficient response efforts of Moroccan authorities as well as the international medical and humanitarian support teams.

The organization commended the tremendous efforts being made in Morocco to provide relief in the earthquake-affected regions.

The humanitarian organization expressed its satisfaction with the medical humanitarian response to the earthquake’s aftermath, stressing that nearly all urgent and critical medical and humanitarian needs were addressed.

“The immediate and urgent medical and humanitarian needs were addressed in the days following the emergency thanks to the massive mobilization of the Moroccan authorities and the local civil society,” Doctors Without Borders said in a statement posted on its website.

The statement emphasized that “Patients requiring medical care have already been transferred to the central hospitals in Chichaoua and Marrakech.”

Furthermore, initial aid such as food, water, blankets, tents, and other essential items have already been distributed to the majority of the locals in the earthquake-affected areas.

John Johnson, Doctors Without Borders emergency coordinator, applauded the timely response and support provided to the affected residents and described the commendable efforts carried out by the Moroccan authorities and Red Cross Volunteers as “an incredible mobilization.”

The international humanitarian organization also emphasized the importance of prioritizing mental health care for those devastated by the Al-Haouz earthquake, announcing that “mobilization efforts for psychological support are underway in some regions, which we will assess as it is necessary to improve psychological support as part of ongoing intervention efforts.”

Approximately 15 individuals from “Doctors Without Borders” moved to the ground in Morocco. Their mission has been assessing the situation in Al-Haouz region and providing essential medicines in a number of villages.

The rescue efforts are still underway as Moroccan authorities alongside international rescue teams continue their dedicated work to assist and support those affected by the earthquake.

The devastating earthquake left nearly 3000 dead and over 5670 injured.

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