Bulgaria is ready to send rescue crews and equipment to Albania to help track down injured people and deal with the effects of a 6.4-magnitude Richter earthquake that shook the country’s Adriatic coast early on November 26, Interior Minister Mladen Marinov said.
At least 13 people died and more than 600 were injured in the quake, which also caused extensive property destruction.
Marinov made the announcement after speaking with his Albanian counterpart Sandër Lleshaj and Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borissov.
The procedure has been initiated, Marinov said.
“These are modules designed to search and rescue in the aftermath of such natural disasters, as it is very important – the first few days to be able to find people who are buried and who are alive and need immediate assistance. This includes dogs, mobility equipment, medical teams, so the whole module is ready to go there as needed,” he said.
Bulgaria’s government information service said on November 26 that Borissov has sent a cable of condolences to Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama.
“On behalf of the whole Bulgarian people and on my own behalf, I extend my sincerest condolences to you and to the relatives and loved ones of the victims,” Borissov told Rama.
“We share the pain of the Albanian people, express our hope for the immediate recovery of the victims and the swift recovery of serious material damage. At this difficult time, we are ready to provide the necessary support for our friend Albania,” Borissov said.
National Assembly Speaker Tsveta Karayancheva has sent a condolence letter to Albanian Parliament Speaker Gramoz Ruçi, Parliament’s press service said.
Following the earthquake and aftershocks that hit Albania, the EU Civil Protection Mechanism was activated at the request of the Albanian authorities, the European Commission said on November 26.
(Photo of Marinov: Interior Ministry press centre)