Israel will begin sending emergency medical aid, including badly needed oxygen equipment, to India on Tuesday, the Foreign Ministry said, to help fight the world's biggest COVID-19 surge.
In a statement on Monday, the ministry said a series of flights throughout the week would carry aid that included thousands of group and individual oxygen generators, as well as respirators, medications and other medical equipment.
"The extension of emergency assistance is an expression of the deep friendship between our countries in India's time of need," the statement quoted Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi as saying.
International aid has poured into India in response to the crisis as the country's health system struggles to cope under the weight of new COVID-19 cases, with hospitals running out of beds and oxygen.
Both nations have been enjoying a warm relationship in recent years, with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Indian counterpart Narendra Modi fostering a close personal friendship.
In the early days of the pandemic, the world's largest democracy rushed to send the Jewish state a five-tonne cargo of medicines, including anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine — which was then speculated to be effective in treating COVID-19 — despite Delhi placing stringent restrictions on the export of pharmaceuticals.
Now it's Israel's turn to return the favor as the country seems to have defeated the pandemic within its borders after a successful vaccine rollout that has seen more than half of its population inoculated against coronavirus.