Saturday, December 4, 2010

PM Netanyahu thanks World leaders for valuable assistance; says :It's not a shame to ask for help

US President Barack Obama phoned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday evening to convey his condolences to the families who lost their loved ones in the blaze and expressed his support for the citizens of Israel. President Obama said that he has made providing urgent assistance to Israel a top priority and that he has instructed government bodies to make arrangements to transfer the necessary resources.

The Prime Minister thanked the President personally and for the entire country for Americas readiness to help and for the substansial assistance that the US Government has already provided and on its intention to provide additional aid.

Netanyahu also spoke on Friday for the first time with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and thanked him for the assistance in the efforts to control the Carmel brushfire: "We very much appreciate this mobilization and I am certain that it will be an opening toward improving relations between our two countries, Turkey and Israel."

President Mahmoud Abbas received on Saturday, a telephone call from Prime Minister Netanyahu, expressing his gratitude for the help of the The three units of the Palestinian Civil Defense were sent to assist in extinguishing Carmel fire.

On Friday, Netanyahu spoke with the heads of state of Russia, Germany, Turkey, Britain, Norway, Finland, Belgium, the Ukraine and the United States.

in addition PM Netanyahu's office released video of Phone call with his Russian counterpart PM Vladamir Putin and thanked him and his country for their assistance in the effort to control the deadly forest fire.

Speaking at the Haifa University command post on Saturday evening, Netanyahu explained that similar incidents have taken place across the world, "in the huge fires in Russia, the United States, Greece and several other countries. These fires have nothing to do with arson. Huge fires require the operation of combined forces. This requires aerial activity, as the ground forces cannot stop the fire from spreading."

The prime minister elaborated on his requests for the world's help in battling the fire, noting that "We have nothing to be ashamed of. We live in a global world. We give help and receive help." He called the foreign aid "heartwarming".

Netanyahu said the Evergreen Supertanker, a Boeing 747-200 modified into an aerial firefighting aircraft, was expected to land in Israel from the US on Saturday night, at around 1 am.

He said the contract with the company was signed within an hour after he had heard that "there was such a plane"..."We are bringing a Boeing Supertanker, the largest plane of its kind in the world, and we have been told that it can also do night flights – there is nothing like that in the world."

He went on to say that he planned to purchase a fleet of firefighting aircraft. "This is something we need in the era of global warming and fires. We must change our ability to deal with huge fires."