Today Christos Stylianides, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, signed the agreement on the country's official participation in the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, together with Dr Fuat Oktay, President of the Disaster and Emergency Management Authority of Turkey.
The signature ceremony took place today (photo courtesy Editorial Advisory Panel Member Dennis Davis)
"Turkey will be a valuable partner in our common goal to prepare better for disasters and to respond jointly and effectively when a crisis strikes", said Commissioner Stylianides. "In a world increasingly prone to disasters, we need to act together, each contributing its expertise, capabilities and experience. This is exactly what the Civil Protection Mechanism is about.”
As part of the Mechanism, Turkey will have access to important cooperation opportunities, including joint civil protection trainings and exercises, participation in prevention and preparedness projects, and more.
Turkey's entry into the EU Civil Protection Mechanism coincides with the European Civil Protection Forum taking place today and tomorrow in Brussels. The two-day conference gathers disaster management experts from around the world to exchange best practices and enhance their co-operation at all levels.
The EU Civil Protection Mechanism facilitates co-operation in disaster response, preparedness and prevention among European states. With the support from the European Commission, the participating states pool resources, which can be made available to disaster-stricken countries all over the world.
The European Commission manages the Mechanism through the Emergency Response Co-ordination Centre (ERCC). Operating 24/7, the ERCC monitors risks and emergencies around the world and serves as an information and coordination hub during emergencies.
Turkey has received assistance through the Mechanism following the earthquake in 2011, as well as for the refugee crisis triggered by the conflict in Syria.
Photo: Christos Stylianides, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management and Fuat Oktay, President of the Disaster and Emergency Management Authority of Turkey (Photo credit: EU)