Pakistani American doctors raised $365,000 within an hour during a Zoom telethon on Sunday to help victims of Turkey’s catastrophic earthquake that killed more than 46,000 people and left millions in desperate need of aid.
Pakistan’s official APP news agency quoted organizers, APPNA, saying that more contributions were expected, both in cash and kind. The Association of Pakistani Descent Physicians of North America represents more than 15,000 physicians of Pakistani descent serving across the USA and Canada.
Speaking on the occasion, Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States, Masood Khan, made a passionate appeal to the diaspora to contribute generously towards providing relief to the Turkish brethren, as “their suffering is our suffering, their agony is our agony,” according to a press release issued by the Pakistani embassy.
Ambassador @HMuratMercan and Pakistani Ambassador to US @Masood__Khan joined today telethon organized by @APPNA. Thanks to our 🇵🇰 brothers and sisters in 🇺🇸, over $365,000 raised for earthquake relief in Türkiye. We are grateful for your support! 🇹🇷🇵🇰 pic.twitter.com/dFmVqGONu7
— Turkish Embassy DC (@TurkishEmbassy) February 19, 2023
Turkey’s Ambassador Hasan Murat Mercan, who also participated in the virtual telethon, briefed the participants about the magnitude of the calamity.
He thanked the government and the people of Pakistan, especially the Pakistani community residing in the United States, for their prompt and generous support at this difficult hour.
Thank you Ambassador Hassan Murat Mercan for joining Pakistani-American doctors @APPNA zoom telethon for raising funds for earthquake response in Türkiye. Thank you Dr. Arshad Rehan, President APPNA for organising the telethon and for raising more than $365,000.@TurkishEmbassy pic.twitter.com/zsfQY5GEo4
— Masood Khan (@Masood__Khan) February 20, 2023
In his remarks, Ambassador Khan said: “Our hearts go out to the people and government of [Turkey] who were hit by one of the deadliest earthquakes in the past one hundred years and one of the biggest natural disasters of our times.”
The Pakistani envoy expressed heartfelt condolences of the nation to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the entire nation of Turkey over the tragic loss of precious lives and other damages.
Ambassador Khan also lauded the Association of Physicians of Pakistani Descent of North America (APPNA) and its leadership for organizing the telethon and raising humanitarian assistance for the earthquake response in Turkey.
In little over an hour, APPNA @APPNA raised over $365,000 for the earthquake victims of #Turkiye in a Zoom meeting of its members. Thank you 🇹🇷 Ambassador @HMuratMercan and 🇵🇰 Ambassador @Masood__Khan for joining the meeting.
— Assoc. of Pakistani Physicians of North America (@APPNA) February 19, 2023
APPNA, on the occasion, also offered to send a medical mission to Turkey to support relief efforts.
On February 11, it was reported that a Pakistani in the United States had anonymously “donated $30 million to the Turkish embassy” for the earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria.