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US announces Additional US$ 22.5m in assistance to Earthquake

KATHMANDU: The US government has announced an additional US$ 11 million aid to Nepal for the earthquake response. This brings total US humanitarian assistance to Nepal to nearly US$ 26 million.

Visiting Acting Administrator of US Agency for International Development Alfonso E Lenhardt made the commitment to provide Nepal an additional US$ 11 million during his meeting with Prime Minister Sushil Koirala on Tuesday afternoon. He had also conveyed sorrow expressed by US President Barack Obama over the loss of lives and property during the massive earthquake that jolted Nepal on April 25.

Speaking at a press conference organized by the US Embassy later in the afternoon, Acting Administrator Lenhardt said the new funding will support delivery of additional shelter materials, critical medical supplies, safe drinking water, improved sanitation services and hygiene kits to people hardest hit by the earthquake.

US envoy to Nepal Peter W Bodde said all US assistance efforts for the Nepali people are coordinated closely with the Government of Nepal and support Nepal’s request for humanitarian assistance.

According to him, US Department of Defense (DoD) is assisting relief efforts and supporting the Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART), which includes Urban Search and Rescue personnel from Fairfax County, Virginia and Los Angeles County, California. The DART team is led by Bill Berger.

Four 4 C-17 transport aircraft and two additional UH-1Y Hueys and approximately 50 Air Force personnel are arriving in Kathmandu soon as a part of the Contingency Response Group from the US Air Force. The CRG will be able to provide quick reaction to logistical support for the humanitarian missions, according to US embassy officials. The DoD has already provided one UH-1Y Huey helicopter and four MV-22 Ospreys to assist with relief efforts.

According to a fact-sheet provided by the US embassy on earthquake response, the USAID committed US$ 1 million to Save the Children for emergency relief supplies immediately following the earthquake, including shelter materials and water, sanitation and hygiene items.

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