RA TAES Minister Received Congratulations for the Armenian Rescuers to Undergo the INSARAG Qualification


Recently the RA TAES Minister A. Yeritsyan received congratulations from the Head of the Regional Office of the United Nations “Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs” (OCHA) in the Caucasus, Central Asia and Ukraine Marcel Vaessen, on joining the MTAES RS urban search and rescue team the International Search and Rescue Advisory Group of the United Nations (INSARAG). OCHA is the part of the United Nations Secretariat responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies. It was established in 1991.

The congratulation of the Head of the Regional Office of the United Nations OCHA reads as follows:

“Dear Mr. A. Yeritsyan

Let me, on behalf of the United Nations “Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs” (OCHA) in the Caucasus, Central Asia and Ukraine and on my own behalf congratulate You on the Armenian rescuers successful qualification and their joining the international Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG).

INSARAG’s creation is mainly related to the lessons learned at devastating Spitak earthquake in 1988. In this regard, it is noteworthy, that Armenia, which had suffered from the severe consequences of the disaster, became the first country in the region and the fourth of the former Soviet republics (after Russia, Belarus and Ukraine), whose rescue team had undergone INSARAG qualification. This, of course, the evidence of Armenian rescuers’ high preparedness.

Let me also mention, that INSARAG’s qualification award is the result of both, Your work, and the work of the entire staff of the Ministry, as well as the daily hard work of the supporting organizations, that were involved in the formation of the team.

In particular, it is worth to mention the fruitful cooperation between the RA MTAES and the UN OCHA, particularly highlighting the level of mutual understanding and trust in all joint initiatives.

I wish the Armenian rescuers success, both at home, and in the international arena.

Taking this opportunity, I would like to assure You my deep respect, and reiterate our readiness to further cooperation in terms of years”.

Note, that INSARAG is a global network of more than 80 countries and organizations under the United Nations umbrella. It was established in 1991, after the devastating earthquake in Spitak, aiming to strengthen the effectiveness and coordination of international search and rescue assistance. In 2011 Armenia applied for INSARAG membership, to pass external classification.

From September 1-4 current year, two Urban Search and Rescue Teams of the of the RA MTAES RS successfully underwent a 36-hour rather difficult external classification exam-exercise. The search and rescue team’s management and response capabilities, the rescuers’ knowledge, as well as medical and logistics provision were tested during the exam. A positive conclusion of peer experts was needed to undergo the classification process of INSARAG. According to the experts, the team met all the requirements and criteria.

On September 4, on that symbolic day - the day of the rescuer and the employee of MTAES, Armenia became a member of the International Search and Rescue big family.

It’s a great honor for Armenia to undergo such classification in the UN, as many rescue teams of INSARAG member countries do not have adequate training standards yet.

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