27 December 2003

U.S. to Provide Humanitarian Assistance to Iran

More than 200 experts in emergency medicine and disaster relief to be deployed

The White house announced on December 27 that the U.S. government is working with Iranian and international relief groups to provide humanitarian assistance to the people of Iran after an earthquake there yesterday that devastated the city of Bam.

According to the White House, the U.S. military will deliver more than 150,000 pounds of medical supplies to Iran from bases in Kuwait.

Following is the text of the White House statement:

(begin transcript)

The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
December 27, 2003

The United States government is currently working with Iranian authorities, the United Nations, and the International Red Cross and Red Crescent to rapidly deploy humanitarian assistance to the people of Iran following yesterday's devastating earthquake in Bam.
The United States will deploy civilian teams composed of more than 200 experts in urban search and rescue, emergency surgery, and disaster response coordination -- including medical response teams from Boston, Massachusetts, and local disaster response teams from Los Angeles, California, and Fairfax County, Virginia. Disaster response experts will also be drawn from USAID, FEMA, and the Department of State, and the US military will deliver more than 150,000 pounds of medical supplies from bases in Kuwait to the people of Iran.
The United States will continue to work with Iranian authorities and international relief organizations to help the people of Iran during this challenging time.

(end transcript)

(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)

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