India sends rapid response team to Kuwait to fight Covid-19
India on Saturday despatched a medical rapid response team to Kuwait to boost the West Asian country’s fight against the Covid-19 pandemic by helping in the testing and treatment of infected people.
The Indian government has created several rapid response teams following the Covid-19 outbreak and it recently offered to send them to friendly countries to help in efforts to prevent and control the spread of the Coronavirus. The 15-member Indian team was sent at the request of the Kuwait government.
The team of Indian doctors and healthcare professionals will “supplement the efforts of the government of…Kuwait in the collective fight against global Covid-19 pandemic”, the external affairs ministry said in a statement.
The team, which was flown to Kuwait in an Indian Air Force aircraft, is expected to stay there for two weeks, during which it will “render medical assistance in testing and treatment of the afflicted persons and training [Kuwaiti] personnel”, the statement said.
“India’s RAPID RESPONSE TEAM arrives in Kuwait. Follow up to the discussion between our two Prime Ministers on #COVID19. Underlines the special friendship between India and Kuwait,” external affairs minister S Jaishankar tweeted.
“India is reaching out to Kuwait in the extended neighbourhood to further complement its efforts to fight the menace effectively,” the statement said.
India earlier sent a similar team to the Maldives and has plans to send another to Nepal.
The deputation of the Indian experts followed the phone call between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Kuwaiti counterpart Sheikh Sabah al-Khaled al-Hamad al-Sabah on April 1, when the leaders agreed on concerted and coordinated efforts against the pandemic.
Jaishankar and his Kuwaiti counterpart also had a telephone conversation to discuss the situation in Kuwait and to explore ways to strengthen cooperation during these challenging times, the ministry said.
India and Kuwait have a strong partnership based on historical, cultural, economic and people-to-people-contacts. Indians constitute the largest group of expatriates in Kuwait, with an estimated population of about 1 million and their annual remittances are estimated at $4.8 billion.
India has also been among Kuwait’s top 10 trading partners, with bilateral trade worth $6.2 billion during 2015-16 despite a drop in the value of India’s imports due to the fall in oil prices and a cut in the volume of oil imports from Kuwait.
During his conversation with Modi, the Kuwaiti prime minister said his country greatly values the contributions of the Indian community and will continue to ensure their safety and welfare in the current situation.