Hero rescue dogs returning from Turkey are upgraded to first class in honor of their service.
Turkish Airlines said it doesn’t want the dogs traveling in the cargo hold after all their hard work.
The magnitude 7.8 earthquake on February 6 killed more than 45,000 people in Turkey and thousands more in neighboring Syria and completely destroyed hundreds of thousands of buildings.
A spokesperson for Turkish Airlines told MailOnline, “As we have experienced an extraordinary period during our evacuation operations due to earthquakes in our eastern regions that have affected our entire country and nation, we are flying our heroes, the rescue teams along with their dogs, who be rented in the cabin for this period (also in business class).
“It was the least we could do to show our appreciation for the sincere and heroic efforts of these heroic dogs.”
Turkish Airlines said the gesture was to “show appreciation for the sincere and heroic efforts of these heroic dogs”
A spokesperson for Turkish Airlines said, “As we have experienced an extraordinary period during our evacuation operations due to earthquakes in our eastern regions that have affected our whole country and nation, we are flying our heroes, the rescue teams along with their dogs, who can be rented in the cabin during this period (also in business class)’
Rescue dogs were sent to Turkey from a number of countries, including the US, UK, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Libya, Poland and Switzerland.
Turkish Airlines told Insider it had also flown dogs from Thailand, Kyrgyzstan, Hungary and China.
On Feb. 7, a day after the 7.8 earthquake, Mexico announced it would send some of its famous search and rescue dogs to help search for people buried under the rubble.
A plane with 16 dogs on board has taken off from Mexico City.
Mexico, which is prone to earthquakes, has highly specialized civilian and military teams often deployed to assist in disaster situations.
The dogs saved several lives during the country’s 2017 earthquake.
Frida, a golden labrador who belonged to the Mexican Navy, became a national icon in Mexico after she was photographed wearing goggles and boots.
Although Frida died last year, one of her comrades from the 2017 rescue efforts was among those helping in Turkey, BBC News reported.
Dogs are often used in rescue efforts in areas where the use of heavy machinery could further collapse the rubble, endangering the lives of survivors.
The dogs are trained to track people down and alert their handlers by barking and scratching the ground where the scent is strongest.
Turkish Airlines also provided free flights for evacuees after the earthquake.
“We evacuated a total of 296,819 civilians with 1,646 flights,” Yahya Ustun, Turkish Airlines senior vice president of media relations, wrote on Twitter on Feb. 21.
The airline has also provided free cargo transportation for urgent medical supplies to aid in the recovery and reconstruction of earthquake-affected areas.
The airline said it was donating free carrier bags to airports so other pets could be safely taken on planes for evacuation flights.
“We would also like to thank our friends from abroad for their overwhelming support and assistance in response to the crisis, along with our missions, embassies and consulates for coordinating to bring relief materials from other countries to the affected region with our cargo flights,” said Prof. Dr. Ahmet Bolat, the chairman of Turkish Airlines in a statement.
“Our national airline will remain with our citizens in the future, just as it has been with all its capabilities.”
According to the airline’s website, Turkish Airlines’ network spans 121 countries and 342 airports.
Turkish Airlines didn’t want the dogs traveling in the cargo hold after all their hard work
Rescue dogs were sent to Turkey from a number of countries including the US, UK, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Libya, Poland and Switzerland
Rescue workers pulled a dog alive from a collapsed building in southern Turkey three weeks after last month’s deadly magnitude 7.8 earthquake, local media reported yesterday.
The teams of a local municipality in central Turkey rescued the dog Aleks on Wednesday and delivered it to Haytap, a Turkish animal protection organization in the city of Antakya.
A video from the DHA news agency shows rescuers reaching between two large concrete slabs and calling out to the trapped dog.
Footage showed rescuers hugging the dog, who appears to be alert and in good health, and offering him water.
Rescue workers rescued hundreds of captive cats, dogs, rabbits and birds that were fostered by locals in Antakya, one of the cities razed to the ground by the disaster.
After the deadliest earthquake in its modern history, Turkey faces the daunting task of clearing hundreds of millions of tons of debris, some of it potentially harmful.
The Feb. 6 earthquake and aftershocks left at least 156,000 buildings completely collapsed or damaged to the point where they require demolition, Turkish authorities said, with entire swathes of cities reduced to shattered concrete and steel.
The UN Development Program said the resulting 116-210 million tons of rubble is equivalent to an area of 100 square kilometers (40 square miles), if it were piled to a height of 1 meter. That’s about the size of Barcelona.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, who is likely to hold elections on May 14, has pledged to rebuild homes within a year, though experts warned that safety should come before speed.
An official said tenders and contracts for some projects had already been finalized and safety would not be compromised.
Emergency services search for people inside a destroyed building in Adana, Turkey, on February 7, 2023
Dogs are pictured in the first class cabin of a Turkish Airlines flight
A rescue dog is pictured at the airport before boarding a Turkish Airlines flight
The Turkish opposition alliance fell apart on Friday after one of its leaders refused to support a joint candidate against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The cracks emerged a day after the six opposition party leaders held a meeting in Ankara to discuss who to run against Erdogan in the May 14 polls.
Five parties backed Kemal Kilicdaroglu, a former official who heads Turkey’s main secular party, as the frontrunner in the effort to end Erdogan’s rule.
But Meral Aksener, leader of the nationalist Iyi party, opposed Kilicdaroglu and instead supported the popular opposition mayor of Istanbul, Ekrem Imamoglu, or the mayor of Ankara, Mansur Yavas.
“I am sorry to say that as of yesterday the Table of Six has been unable to reflect the will of the nation in its decisions,” Aksener said after meeting with her party deputies on Friday.
She said her party was forced to choose Kilicdaroglu and added, “We will not bow to this.”
Turkey is heading to a crucial election on May 14, three months after a devastating earthquake hit several provinces.
The opposition bloc is due to announce their joint candidate next Monday.