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Turkey enjoys PR win with coronavirus aid shipment to US

Turkey ships face masks and other personal protective equipment to the United States and evacuates a Turkish COVID-19 patient from Sweden.
Workers produce face masks as the demand for their production rapidly increased and struggles to meet orders, at a Turkish manufacturer's facility in Istanbul, Turkey, January 30, 2020. REUTERS/Umit Bektas - RC2EQE9GQX3A

It's a rare moment when something positive happens between Turkey and the United States. It took the COVID-19 outbreak for it to materialize. “Wheels up! We are deeply grateful” the US Embassy in Turkey exclaimed on its official Twitter account. It was referring to Ankara's widely trumpeted donation of a planeload of masks, gowns and face shields — among other items — to help the pandemic-stricken United States contain the outbreak of the novel coronavirus. The supplies were scheduled for delivery today via a Turkish air force cargo plane that took off for Andrews Airbase near Washington.

“As this delivery indicates, the US-Turkey relationship is strong and one of our most important alliances,” said Washington's man in Ankara, David Satterfield, in a written statement. “NATO solidarity during this pandemic highlights the strength of our Transatlantic bond. A very big thank you people of Turkey,” tweeted Kay Bailey Hutchinson, the US ambassador to NATO.

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