Turkish nationals in SZ thank China for help

Writer: Wang Jingli  |  Editor: Zhang Chanwen  |  From: Shenzhen Daily  |  Updated: 2023-02-09

Shenzhen rescue team members set out for quake-hit Türkiye yesterday. Photos by Sun Yuchen

The devastating earthquake that rocked Türkiye and northern Syria on Monday was heartbreaking to many people around the world, let alone Turkish citizens living in Shenzhen, far away from their home.

Mikail Cevik, owner of an Istanbul restaurant in Luohu District, told Shenzhen Daily that he felt deeply sorrowful after knowing his country was struck by a massive earthquake.

Cevik showed the reporter several videos sent by his friends and family members which showed peeling wall paint, broken home furniture and people walking on the street covered by heavy snow in Türkiye.

“Although my home [in Türkiye] was hit by the earthquake, luckily, my family is safe now. I contact them every day, check the news every day and pray for them every day. We [Turkish people] are in a bad mood these days,” Cevik said.

Shenzhen rescue team members at a coordination meeting before they left Shenzhen yesterday for the rescue work in Türkiye. 

Shenzhen Rescue Volunteers Federation dispatched a six-member advance unit that left from Hong Kong yesterday to join a team from China for rescue work in Türkiye.

Cevik said that he is thankful for China’s immediate help after the destructive earthquake. “Many of my Chinese friends also sent me messages, showing care for me and my family. Many people are helping us. I really appreciate this,” he said.

“I want to say thank you on behalf of the Turkish people. We are very thankful to China and other countries helping us,” said Mirsat Batuhan Millet, another Turkish expat who has lived in Shenzhen for over four years, yesterday.

Süleyman Sülooğlu (L), a Turkish soccer coach living in Shenzhen, will work as a guide and interpreter for the rescue team. He waves to people who see the team off yesterday.

Millet said his family members who are living in the city of Izmir are not in danger, but he has a friend who was unable to contact her family.

“I felt heartbroken about this. Some Turkish people are organizing to send aid materials from Shenzhen to Türkiye. I will join them,” Millet said. “Additionally, we also considered transferring money to companies and institutions in Türkiye that are offering help. My Chinese friends said they would like to donate money if needed.”

Chen Yuan, head of the advance team, is busy packing her luggage ahead of the trip.

Members of the advance unit of the federation pack their belongings before departure for Türkiye yesterday afternoon.

A member of the advance unit helps Sülooğlu adjust his backpack before they set off to Türkiye yesterday afternoon.