Head of the Ministry of Emergency Situations of the Russian Federation, Lieutenant General Alexander Kurenkov
Photo: Vladimir VELENGURIN
On Tuesday night, November 14, the head of the emergency department, Lieutenant General Alexander Kurenkov, told journalist Tatyana Khan, who, by the way, has been covering the Ministry of Emergency Situations for the TASS news agency For more than 20 years, how the evacuation of Russian citizens from the Gaza Strip continues.
Here the main topics discussed by the minister…
The equipment works well, everything is calculated literally in seconds.
– …The advanced (operational) group of the Ministry of Emergency Situations, as now, at this very moment, is constantly working at the Rafah checkpoint.
The distance from this checkpoint to Cairo is 8 hours by road.
In Cairo, with the help of the Russian embassy, a hotel was rented where the headquarters of the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations will be installed.
They work absolutely harmoniously, the mechanism is calibrated, everything is calculated there, everything is done in a matter of seconds.
The boys have been tested, the boys are prepared. It is a pleasure to work with a team like this. I tell you from my heart…
On the physical condition of the evacuees
– Among those in the Gaza area, there are children…
Well, first of all, probably, what people dream of is drinking water, just washing.
And as for their physical condition, many are dehydrated, they simply did not have the opportunity to drink water in full and in sufficient quantity.
Psychological overload is underway. People leave the combat zone, where a person begins to think whether he will wake up tomorrow or not.
This is a huge overhead for civilians.
If a military man mentally prepares for this, perhaps throughout his life, then for women, especially for children and adolescents, this is the greatest overload.
How rescued people are received in Moscow
– After the evacuees take a few breaths, this group is escorted to the plane in an organized manner. They fly to Moscow on an Il-76 of the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations
Here, at the arrival airport, in Domodedovo, a situational headquarters has been deployed, where representatives of a fairly large number of departments work.
These are the customs and border services, the Ministry of the Interior, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Health.
And, of course, the Moscow region.
It is on their territory that the temporary detention center is located, and all issues related to the supply of everything that the new arrivals need are taken over by the regional authorities.
All instructions of the President of Russia will be carried out.
“Of course, everything related to helping our citizens, compatriots who arrived from the Gaza Strip, will be done.
We will comply with all instructions from the President of Russia received within the framework of this emergency situation, government orders…
The documents required by the consular department are processed there, on the spot. All our employees know perfectly well what needs to be done.
Of course, consultations are held and doctors and psychologists work with children and adults…
Today we have information that, in addition to Russian citizens from the Gaza Strip, citizens of other bordering countries of the Russian Federation, that is, the republics of the former Soviet Union, would also like to evacuate. We don’t reject anyone. When they come out, we, of course, will also pick them up and bring them to our territory.
Rescuers work putting their lives at risk.
– If we summarize the provisional results, can we say that the Ministry of Emergency Situations has fully worked out the route from the Rafah checkpoint to Domodedovo airport and beyond? And that the air bridge that you organized between Moscow and Cairo will operate permanently for as long as it is necessary?
– Absolutely so. You will need to fly through several countries, we have permission for all countries and air corridors…
Now we have two Il-76s there. If there is such an opportunity, we will immediately be able to send at least 300 people to Russia.
And, most importantly, everyone comes back alive…
There are still military operations there, we care as much about those in trouble as we do about our people.
The danger exists, it is always there, in everything. So we understand it, and especially when we send our people on this type of task, and the task is serious and our employees deal with it. We see it.
* * *
…Responding to the question whether the operation to evacuate our citizens from the Gaza Strip can already be considered a success, Alexander Vyacheslavovich noted:
– Let’s take the last one (Russian citizen, compatriot), then we will consider her successful. The work continues…