Rio Grande Valley doctor traveling to Syria to provide aid in earthquake recovery efforts

3 months 3 weeks 2 days ago Wednesday, February 08 2023 Feb 8, 2023 February 08, 2023 9:52 AM February 08, 2023 in News - Local

A Rio Grande Valley doctor said his goodbyes to his family to help earthquake victims in Syria.

Syrai-born Dr. Monzer Yazji, CEO of ASAS Health, plans on flying out of Houston to Turkey and then driving from Istanbul to Syria.

Turkey and Syria were devastated by a 7.8 earthquake on Monday that resulted in thousands of deaths. But videos have shown there is still hope that there could be life trapped beneath all the concrete and broken rebar. 

"Seeing some of the videos and hearing how the children are screaming, it's heartbreaking," Dr. Yazji said.

Dr. Yazji has organized medical relief missions all over the world, including Haiti and Ukraine. But this time, he said it's his home country and his people.

"Syria is the most difficult part to go. There's no place for safety there," Dr. Yazji said.

Much like he did in Ukraine, Dr. Yazji will arrive in Turkey with a team of doctors, then drive to Syria. He plans to treat patients, train local doctors and figure out what they're going to need in the coming weeks.

It's supposed to be a 10-day mission, but Dr. Yazji has not booked a return flight.

"When I leave the Valley, here is like I'm saying goodbye to everyone, my patients, my family, and God is the only one gonna bring me back to here," Dr. Yazji said.

He said he plans on staying in Syria as long as he's needed.

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