New hospital 'symbol of friendship' with Sudan: Turkish deputy PM

By Mohamed al-Khatem

KHARTOUM – Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Emrullah Isler on Thursday described a new Turkish-funded specialized-research hospital in Darfur as a "symbol of friendship" between Turkey and Sudan.

Speaking on the eve of the hospital's inauguration, Isler said Turkey attached "great importance" to Sudan and sought to help promote peace in the long-troubled country.

Turkey is keen to maintain support for Sudan and exchange expertise with Khartoum, said Isler, who arrived in Khartoum on Thursday for a two-day visit.

Isler said that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan had ordered the hospital built during a 2006 visit to Darfur.

Sudanese Vice-President Hasabo Abdel-Rahman, for his part, said Khartoum was keen to expand its strategic relations with Ankara in all fields.

Funded by the Turkish Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA), the 11,000-square-meter Sudan-Turkey Training and Research Hospital boasts 31 polyclinics.

The hospital also has biochemistry, microbiology and pathology laboratories, as well as a blood bank and radiology center.

The radiology center is equipped with advanced imaging devices, including two conventional MR machines –one for mammography and one for tomography – and five for ultrasound treatment.

The Turkish and Sudanese health ministries inked an operations deal last year to run the hospital jointly for five years.

The new hospital aims to provide reliable, high-quality health services to the people of the region, while also training 50 Sudanese health workers each year.

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