Eighty Japanese soldiers arrive in Australia with medical supplies to help fight forest fires

A Japanese soldier says his nation will “never forget” how Australia sent aid after the 2011 earthquake, when its team arrives in Sydney to help fight fires.

  • Military personnel arrived at the Richmond Air Force Base in Sydney on Thursday.
  • Two planes will help transport people and supplies to areas devastated by forest fires
  • Eighty Japanese soldiers arrived with medical supplies, including facial masks

More than 80 Japanese soldiers and civil disaster experts have arrived in Australia to provide support in the midst of the forest fire crisis.

Two planes filled with medical supplies, including face masks for firefighters and troops, landed at the Richmond Air Force Base in western Sydney on Thursday.

Air Commodore Carl Newman of the Royal Australian Air Force said that the two Hercules C130 transport aircraft would be “vital” to help fight violent fires.

Two planes filled with military and civilian personnel and medical supplies, including facial masks, landed at the Richmond Air Force Base in western Sydney on Thursday.

Two planes filled with military and civilian personnel and medical supplies, including facial masks, landed at the Richmond Air Force Base in western Sydney on Thursday.

“The additional C130 that the Japanese have brought will be vital to help us,” Newman said.

“It’s a true reflection of friends who support each other in crisis and we really appreciate it.”

Assistance follows Australia’s response to the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan in 2011.

Military personnel were sent to the country after an earthquake of magnitude 9.0, which resulted in the loss of almost 20,000 lives.

Colonel Ota Masashi, of the Japan Self-Defense Force, said Australia’s support during his country’s time of need was not forgotten.

“We never forget what Australia did at that time,” he said.

Air commodore Carl Newman (pictured) of the Royal Australian Air Force said the two Hercules C130 transport planes would be 'vital' to help fight violent fires.

Air commodore Carl Newman (pictured) of the Royal Australian Air Force said the two Hercules C130 transport planes would be 'vital' to help fight violent fires.

Air commodore Carl Newman (pictured) of the Royal Australian Air Force said the two Hercules C130 transport planes would be ‘vital’ to help fight violent fires.

Japan joins a growing list of other countries that have offered support to Australia to deal with the fires.

More than 200 US firefighters landed in Sydney earlier this month to help fight fires.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced earlier this month that the country would also send firefighters to help during the forest fire crisis.

Fiji, Canada and Papua New Guinea have also offered support.

A Rural Fire Service volunteer receives instructions from a colleague while putting out a fire near Kulnura, New South Wales

A Rural Fire Service volunteer receives instructions from a colleague while putting out a fire near Kulnura, New South Wales

A Rural Fire Service volunteer receives instructions from a colleague while putting out a fire near Kulnura, New South Wales

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