August 3, 2021 | healthcare

Germany sends Kurdistan Region 100,000 COVID-19 testing kits

“We as Germans know this is a global phenomenon; We will only succeed if we stand together and work jointly.”

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Kurdistan Region’s health authorities on Monday received 100,000 COVID-19 testing kits from Germany as well as training to improve the region’s testing capacity, German and regional authorities said.

The announcement came on Sunday during a press conference attended by the Kurdistan Region Health Minister Saman Barzinji and the German Consul General to Erbil Klemens Semtner on Sunday.

“Germany has provided us with 100,000 PCR testing kits,” minister Barzinji said in the press conference, adding that it is the latest batch of aid from the European country to support Erbil's fight against the highly contagious virus.

Besides material support, Germany has sent a team of medical experts to the Kurdistan Region twice to develop local expertise in fighting COVID-19.

The group of experts dubbed the German Epidemic Preparedness Team consists of the country’s top epidemiologists and members of the international development agency Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).

The team first visited the region in March 2020 in the early days of the pandemic. After a recent surge in infections, the medical team returned to further train and build laboratory testing capacity across the Kurdistan Region, according to Consul General Semtner.

“This shows that Germany wants to provide not only capacity building, but also do substantial material support,” the German diplomat added.

“We as Germans know this is a global phenomenon. We will only succeed if we stand together and work jointly,” Semtner said.

Germany, since the beginning of the pandemic, has provided Iraq with 80 million euros in support, according to the diplomat, noting that his country will “shortly” open a mobile hospital in Sulaimani province of the Kurdistan Region.


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