site.btaUPDATED Deputy Foreign Minister: Bulgaria Awaits Green Light from EU to Send Aid to Quake-Hit Syria
Deputy Foreign Minister Kostadin Kodzhabashev told a press conference in Sofia on Tuesday that Bulgaria is ready to send humanitarian aid to Syria and is waiting for a green light from the EU, specifically from the EU civil protection mechanism. The mechanism is in constant touch with representatives of the World Food Programme in Beirut.
Kodzhabashev confirmed that Spartan aircraft carrying aid will take off from Bulgaria, as soon as the EU approves this move. The shipment will be received by representatives of the, the World Food Programme in Beirut, and the Bulgarian Embassy there. Then, it will take about two hours for the aid to reach Damascus through a secured humanitarian corridor.
Kodzhabashev told the briefing that one Bulgarian family of a mother and her one-year-old was affected by the earthquake in Latakia, Syria. Their home was destroyed. The father is currently in Germany.
The family has refused humanitarian aid from the Bulgarian state. The Bulgarian Embassy in Syria has expressed readiness to provide consular protection and assistance.
The Deputy Minister said that Bulgaria is one of the nine EU Member States that have offered to send humanitarian aid to Syria. The European civil protection mechanism is yet to inform Bulgaria when the aid should be sent.