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Turkish president offers medal to IDF officer who headed Israel’s earthquake aid mission

Turkish President Erdoğan presents Israeli Colonel (res.) Golan Voch with a medal of honor (Photo: Israeli Foreign Ministry)

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan presented a medal of honor to IDF Homefront Command Foreign Rescue Chief Col. (Res.) Golan Voch.

Voch led the Israel’s comprehensive earthquake rescue mission to Turkey in February, following the devastating earthquakes in February that claimed the lives of at least 50,000 people in Turkey and Syria, according to estimates. 

Nadav Markman, the deputy head of mission at the Israeli Embassy in Turkey, also received a medal for his teams’ efforts to save Turkish lives.

Like many times in the past, the Israeli rescue mission was among the first to arrive in the disaster area. Overall, the Turkish leader honored some 90 international delegations that contributed to the rescue work in Turkey. 

The senior IDF officer stressed that Israel’s mission is to save lives around the world. 

“Our goal is to save lives. We believe that life could be saved still in this time slot, the conditions and the circumstances are difficult, the weather is cold, and the destruction is severe,” stated Voch. 

"I was chosen to represent Israel in a meeting with Erdoğan and the Turkish officials and I am proud of the IDF's efforts to save lives," he added. 

"My heart is with the bereaved families in the military cemeteries," he said

An emotional Voch noted that the medal ceremony in Turkey coincided with the Jewish state’s Day of Remembrance. 

Voch stressed that the Israel’s earthquake rescue mission was a joint effort. 

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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