Israel sends search and rescue team, field hospital to Nepal, ramping up to do more
#IDF getting ready to go #NepalEarthquake pic.twitter.com/yn1owNxSMfIsrael has sent a search and rescue team and a field hospital to Nepal, just as you might recall the Jewish state sending one to Haiti five years ago.
— Peter Lerner (@LTCPeterLerner) April 26, 2015
But first, here's video of the moment of impact of Saturday's horrific earthquake in Nepal. Let's go to the videotape.
Israel is preparing to do more.
The Israeli army was preparing to send a rescue mission to Nepal Sunday that includes 260 people who will fly to Katmandu and set up a field hospital there.
The military delegation from the Home Front command has three tasks: to search for survivors of the earthquake and to operate a rescue team; to set up a field hospital to provide medical assistance to the injured; and to establish contact with the Israelis who have been incommunicado.
Forty doctors and about 80 members of a medical team will operate the military field hospital, which will include operating rooms, X-rays, an emergency room, a room for expectant mothers and more. Three rescue teams, each of them with 20 rescuers, will also be included in the military delegation, as well as three dogs from the Oketz canine special forces unit and their handlers.
The delegation will bring with it 95 tons of equipment for 14 full days of operation. It will take off this evening from Ben Gurion International Airport for Kathmandu in two El Al Boeing planes. One will be a transport plane and the other a passenger plane that will also carry equipment.
"We plan to take off at 10:30 P.M., due to the travel time and the weather in the Kathmandu area," said the delegation commander, Col. Yoram Laredo.
The Foreign Ministry says it estimates around 600 Israelis are in Nepal, and has secured contact with 400, most of them sheltering at the embassy in Kathmandu.
These include 25 couples in Nepal to bring home babies born to surrogates.
Of the nearly two dozen countries whose citizens were in Nepal at the time of the earthquake, Israel has the third highest number of citizens there after India and South Korea.Nepal is a very popular post-army destination for Israelis....
Israeli-based humanitarian organization IsraAID is also responding to the crisis in Nepal, coordinating with government officials, UN agencies and other international groups to provide assistance to the Himalayan country that is still reeling from aftershocks.
IsraAID is dispatching a disaster team to Nepal on Sunday to provide relief supplies and medical services, the group said in a statement. It also plans to set up "child-friendly" spaces and send psychologists to the disaster-stricken area.
"We already have an emergency team in place and hopefully we'll put them on a plane later," the group's Founding Director Shachar Zahavi told Israel National News on Sunday. "Just like in Haiti and in other places we have worked, it has medical aspects, opening up field hospitals parallel to those of the IDF. Of course, like in Haiti, we'll do anything in our power to coordinate our efforts with the IDF and the Israeli government."There are other countries that are sending assistance, but I haven't seen any details on what they're sending.