AKUT Search and Rescue Association
Logo of AKUT
|Purpose||Disaster search and rescue relief|
|Affiliations||INSARAG, IRO, Global Compact|
AKUT Search and Rescue Association (Turkish: AKUT Arama Kurtarma Derneği) is a Turkish non-governmental organization for disaster search and rescue relief. It was established in 1996 as an association of unpaid volunteer members in Istanbul under the leadership of the renowned Turkish mountaineer Nasuh Mahruki.
The organization delivers emergency and disaster relief to people trapped in caves, lost on mountains or to victims of earthquake or flood disasters at home and abroad. The initial purpose of the association's establishment was to provide search and rescue relief for climbers in emergency as no local organization of this type existed so far.
The group was formed first in the aftermath of a mountaineering accident occurred in 1994 on Bolkar Mountains, at which two local climbers were involved. In December 1995, a group of volunteer mountaineers led by Nasuh Mahruki conducted their first organized mission on Mt. Uludağ, and rescued people, who got lost in the fog, freezing in heavy snowfall. It was during this operation that the group named itself "AKUT", which is a concept in medicine terminology.
The organization was officially incorporated in the beginning of 1996. The members received earthquake and flood training within the next year. This qualified the organization to work cooperative alongside official agencies during their efforts of natural disaster relief. On January 15, 1999, AKUT was given the status of a charitable organization by the Turkish government.
AKUT became generally known after it quickly reacted to the 1999 İzmit earthquake, and worked with its 150 permanent members and coordinated over 1,000 helpers, who rescued about 200 people from the debris.
On November 30, 2016 the chairman Nasuh Mahruki resigned from his duty as a result of strong pressure from the Turkish government, after his speech on TV against the president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. He has been given the tiltle "Honorary Chairman of AKUT".
As of 2015, the organization counts about 250 core members and is also able to deploy around one thousand volunteers if needed. It has appropriate technical equipment for its operations. The headquarters in Istanbul coordinates 35 teams formed in various cities across the country and organize also specific training courses related to search and rescue, disaster preparedness and response for the members and the volunteers. The number of people rescued by AKUT totaled 2062 as of June 2015.
- Official webpage
- Official webpage of Ankara Team rev. 6. Nov. 2011
- INSARAG USAR Directory rev. 6. Nov. 2011
- IRO - Mitgliedsorganisationen rev. 6. Nov. 2011 (in German)
- Kuwaiti general's daughter rescued in Uludağ, Today’s Zaman, September 2, 2012
- Disaster training center to be established in Erzurum, Hürriyet Daily News, August 27, 2012
- AKUT (Search and Rescue Association) Rescues the Polish Couple, Sun Express News, July 16, 2012
- Two missing Britons found in Turkish Riviera, Hürriyet Daily News, July 13, 2012
- “Earthquake-Simulator Truck” will be in Fethiye on April 23., Sun Express News, April 16, 2012
- AKUT provides fast response in 'Slow City' of Seferihisar, Hürriyet Daily News, April 4, 2011
- Voluntary Service In Twenty-Six Locations, AnadoluJet Magazine, April 2011
- Turkey sends aid team to quake-hit Japan, Hürriyet Daily News, March 12, 2011
- You’ve Got To Do What You Love, Or Love What You Do, AnadoluJet Magazine, December 2010
- Missing Irish father and son found thanks to camera flash, Today’s Zaman, August 4, 2010
- Turkish NGO creates fake quakes to advocate readiness, Hürriyet Daily News, May 26, 2010
- Turkish team rescues another Haiti quake survivor, Hürriyet Daily News, January 22, 2010
- More Turkish rescue teams arrive in Haiti, Hürriyet Daily News, January 19, 2010
- Number of Turkish aid teams in Haiti increases to four, Today’s Zaman, January 20, 2010
- A helping hand that reached under the ruble, Hürriyet Daily News, August 19, 2009
- Fears for missing former British Aerospace manager in Turkey, The Telegraph,August 14, 2009
- Chinese documentary makers climb Mount Ararat, Hürriyet Daily News, March 9, 2007
- Rescue teams back, Turkish business community takes charge to help Pakistan, Hürriyet Daily News, October 17, 2005
- Pakistan Earthquake, Civil Defense and AKUT,Commentary by Nasuh Mahruki, Today’s Zaman, October 17, 2005
- Rescuers Reach Pakistani City Destroyed by Huge Earthquake, The New York Times,October 10, 2005
- Latest death toll from collapsed building reaches 92, Hürriyet Daily News, February 11, 2004
- Rescue dispute grows, Hürriyet Daily News, September 2, 2004
- Rescue Teams Improve Their Equipments After August 17, Today’s Zaman, August 17, 2004
- Turkish search and rescue team returns from Iran, Hürriyet Daily News, December 31, 2003
- Bingol Rescue Teams Sent Home with Applause and Thanks, Today’s Zaman, May 5, 2003
- AKUT's rescue effort in Greece stirs hearts, Hürriyet Daily News, September 10, 1999
- Turkey rescuers recall 921 earthquake mission in Taiwan, Focus Taiwan News Channel,September 23, 2012
- AKUT Returns to Pakistan, Social Accountability International (SAI), November 2012
- AKUT President Nasuh Mahruki, Gives a Seminar to AGU’s Staff about Teamwork[permanent dead link] Abdullah Gul University News
- Earthquake Training for Children (Earthquake Awareness) and AKUT Project, Sabancı University Civic Involvement Projects
- INSARAG - USAR Directory,AKUT Team, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- Expedition: Ararat 2001 Peace Climb, EverestNews
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