IDF Medical Team in Japan

Small Homefront Command team arrived Monday in Japan, ahead of a full-scale medical delegation and thousands of necessary items.

Tags: Japan
Gil Ronen , | updated: 5:28 PM

Preparations for humanitarian mission (file).
Preparations for humanitarian mission (file).
Israel news photo: IDF Spokesman's Unit

A preliminary IDF Homefront Command medical delegation, comprising two doctors and a Homefront Command officer, arrived Monday in the Miyagi prefecture north of Tokyo, and has begun its appraisal of the situation on the ground. A full-scale medical delegation is preparing to leave Israel and join them shortly.

Israel is one of the first countries to dispatch a medical delegation to Japan. To date, a few international search and rescue teams have provided assistance to the stricken nation, but no medical teams have been dispatched.

The Israeli team will remain in the Miyagi prefecture, about six hours' drive north of Tokyo, and the area hardest hit by the recent tsunami. The team will establish a medical clinic geared to handle the casualties and refugees concentrated in the region. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Israeli Embassy in Tokyo will facilitate the dispatch of the team, and will also coordinate communications between the Japanese authorities and the IDF Homefront Command. 
In coordination with the Japanese authorities and according to requirements of the Japanese National Disaster Center, the MFA and Ministry of Defense will distribute a shipment of 10,000 coats, 6,000 blankets, 6,000 pairs of gloves and 150 mobile toilets.
Over the past few days, the MFA has worked with the Japanese authorities to determine a list of the most necessary items. The Japanese authorities noted that Israel will be one of the first countries to provide aid in accordance with their requirements. While other countries sent planeloads of equipment, they did not consult with the Japanese regarding specific requirements. The Japanese also noted Israeli efficiency and flexibility in determining the list of items that would be shipped to Japan.