Japan's Emergency Rescue Team Return from Turkey


Tokyo, Feb. 16 (Jiji Press)--A team of Japanese police officers and firefighters returned home Wednesday after a week of search and rescue operations in Turkey, which was hit by massive earthquakes last week.

"We were able to complete our mission with the help of the people of Turkey," Hideaki Yamamoto, head of the emergency rescue team, told reporters at Tokyo's Haneda airport.

The 74-member team from the National Police Agency, the Fire and Disaster Management Agency and the Japan Coast Guard left for Turkey on the evening of Feb. 6 shortly after the quakes and engaged in search and rescue operations there from Feb. 7 to Tuesday.

The team was welcomed at the airport by about 20 Turkish residents in Japan, who were holding flowers and signs thanking them for their work.

Turkish Ambassador to Japan Korkut Gungen said that the team gave his country reassuring support by coming to the rescue immediately after the quakes. Their efforts have been engraved in the hearts of many Turkish citizens, he said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press