New Delhi (NVI): Australia today sent essential medical supplies to India, which include 1056 ventilators and 43 oxygen concentrators.
The consignment sent by chartered Qantas flight is the “initial package of support to the Indian Government’s programme for combatting the country’s current COVID-19 outbreak,” Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne said in a statement.
These Australian supplies will be distributed by the Indian Red Cross and local authorities to ensure support reaches those in greatest need, she said.
“The Morrison Government is working closely with state and territory governments and the private sector on the urgent deployment of further emergency supplies to India,” Payne said.
She said that as close friends and strategic partners, Australia and India will stand together during this challenging time.
“India has shown great leadership and generosity to the world in exporting vaccines globally. It is time for the world to repay that generosity and Australia as a close friend of the Indian people is playing its part,” Minister Payne said.
“We express our solidarity and deepest support with India as it responds to this ongoing crisis and recognise how difficult this time is for Indians and Australians in India and their loved ones,” she added.
Australian Minister for Health and Aged Care, Greg Hunt, said the Government had offered a significant package of support to the Indian Government.
“We are deeply passionate about supporting people in India, which is why we have reached out to support with medical supplies such as oxygen, ventilators and PPE,” Minister Hunt said.
“At the same time we are working on plans to resume travel from India to support Australians to get home.”
Australia’s High Commission and Consulates in India continue to provide consular assistance to Australians in need.